AIFF Youth League 2017: Spirited Minerva Punjab FC colts defeat high flying Bengaluru FC in the semifinals
- Minerva will play Bengaluru-based Ozone FC in the Finals on 10th February.
Defending Champions Minerva Punjab FC defeated high-flying southern counterparts Bengaluru FC colts in an intense Semi Finals clash played at the Cooperage Football Stadium, Mumbai. The warriors from Chandigarh didn’t leave any stone unturned as they went roaring from the word go as striker Luntingmang Haokip had a great chance to break the deadlock in the very 2nd minute into the game but missed the final touch.
The next couple of minutes saw the warriors launching some aggressive attacks into the Bengaluru FC’s half and making some dreaded moves but Luntingmang Haokip seemed to have a bad day on the field, the gaffer soon replaced him with Manipuri goal machine Nongdamba Noarem whose addition added more force to the warriors attack but didn’t manage to score as both teams went for a lime break with the scoreboard remaining unchanged.
Spaniard coach Jose Carlos Havia played his cards smart as he made some quick changes in the Second Half bringing in Jackson Singh and rock-solid defender Jagjeet Singh as he changed his tactics to overcome the blues challenge, his efforts paid off well soon in the 53rd Minute when Jackson launched a counter-attack but was intercepted by alert defending by Bengaluru FC who kicked it off for a corner.
Former India International Mohammed Sahajahan stepped up to take the kick and curled it accurately to Nongdamba Noarem in the box who didn't make any mistake in breaking the deadlock in favour of the warriors.The warriors then held up the charging Bengaluru FC quite well who speared the Minervans with counter attacks in search of an equaliser but fierce defending by Minervans Jagjeet and Co. in the backline kept the blues at the bay.
The final whistle blew as Minervans emerged victorious after a hard fought match and marched into the Finals of the AIFF Youth League 2017 or Nike Premier Cup 2017, the colts will play Bengaluru-based Ozone FC in the Finals on 10th February at 7pm in The Cooperage Football Stadium Mumbai.