Federation Cup: Bengaluru FC thrash Sporting Clube de Goa 3-0 to set up final date with Dempo
Two first half strikes from Sean Rooney and Sunil Chhetri and a strike from Eugeneson Lyngdoh in the dying minutes of the match secured Bengaluru FC’s final spot in the Hero Federation Cup. Bengaluru FC controlled the game and displayed brilliant combination play on the field. Chhetri’s strike takes his goals tally to 5 goals and placed him as the joint top scorer along with Dempo’s Tolgay Ozbey.
Sean Rooney scored one and set one up for Sunil Chhetri
Both sides opted to play a safe style of football in the early stages of the match. Both were involved in a midfield battle with Bengaluru FC marginally dominating possession. The first goal of the match came in the 28th minute from Sean Rooney. The goal was a result of brilliant combination play between Keegean Perreira and Rooney. Keegan was released by Chhetri down the left flank and he swiftly passed to the Australian striker who just needed to tap the ball into the net.
Just ten minutes later, Rooney set up a ball for skipper Chhetri, who dodged one defender and executed a spectacular finish to beat the goalkeeper. Chhetri thus scored his 5th goal of the tournament and joined Tolgay Ozbey at the top of the highest goal scorer’s chart. Sporting Clube de Goa had quite a few chances, but their strikers failed to convert.
Sporting Clube de Goa dominated in the second half but failed to score
Ashley Westwood understandably opted for a counter-attacking strategy in the second half due to the two goal cushion. They concentrated more on strengthening their defence. Sporting, on the other hand, had no other option but to attack and find a way to score goals. The home side dominated possession and kept on pressing, but the rock solid defensive partnership of John Johnson and Curtis Osano deprived them of scoring.
Anthony Wolfe took a blinder of a free-kick which was saved by Ralte with equal brilliance. Sporting’s marquee player Wolfe got yet another opportunity, but his long ranger hit by the goal post. Bengaluru FC’s hard working midfielder Eugene finally put the last nail in the coffin by scoring the third goal in the 87th minute from second half substitute Robin Singh’s pass. The goal was a product of a brilliant counter-attacking move.
Bengaluru FC will meet local side Dempo SC in a dream final on Sunday. It is safe to say that the best two teams of the tournament will fight the final battle for the ultimate glory.