ISL 2017/18, Semi-Final, Leg 1: FC Pune City vs Bengaluru FC, Player Ratings
Indian Super League playoffs kicked off at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex Stadium in Pune as home side FC Pune City, hosted league leaders Bengaluru FC in the first leg of the semifinal.
The Stallions finished fourth in the final ISL standings and thus, play the first leg at home against the Blue at the Balewadi Stadium. Last time the two sides faced off at the same venue, the visitors had gotten the better of the hosts with a 3-1 win.
The two sides played out a 0-0 stalemate as they could not find a way past the defense of both the sides who put in a good shift tonight. The score sets up for an exciting second leg in Kanteerava Stadium as the teams will go all out for the win.
FC Pune City
Vishal Kaith (6.5/10) - The Pune keeper had a good showing in goal as he kept out a dangerous Sunil Chhetri freekick in the first half. He was confident in his collections whenever Bengaluru tried to attack with long balls.
Adil Khan (6.5/10) - The right-back had the responsibility of marking the Bengaluru skipper Sunil Chhetri and was kept busy throughout the match.
Gurtej Singh (6/10) - The Indian defender slotted into the central defense alongside Rafa Lopez as they kept the threat of Miku and Chhetri in check.
Rafael Lopez (6.5/10) - The Pune skipper organized his backline well as they were up against a formidable Bengaluru attack. He was strong in the air and won a lot of crucial tackles in the defense.
Sahil Panwar (6.5/10) - The young left-back moved up and down the flanks for the home side as he was effective in both attack and defense. He put in good crosses into the box and even had a couple of efforts on the Bengaluru goal.
Marko Stankovic (8/10) - The midfielder played behind the attackers as he moved the ball well across the midfield. He even had a couple of long-range efforts on the Bengaluru goal but could not beat Sandhu. He was awarded the Hero of the Match.
Rohit Kumar (6.5/10) - The young defensive midfielder played the first line of defense for the Punekars. He did well with his tackles and did not allow Bengaluru free reign in the midfield.
Ashique Kuruniyan (5.5/10) - The young winger played on the right flank and gave a tough fight to Subhashish Bose with his pace and movement. He was substituted early in the second half after he received a knock and was stretchered off the pitch.
Diego Carlos (6.5/10) - The winger made his return to the Pune lineup and played on the left flank. He made good runs on the overlap and kept Rahul Bheke in the Bengaluru defense busy.
Emiliano Alfaro (6.5/10) - The target man for Pune up ahead was a constant threat for the Bengaluru defenders as he made good runs into the box. He combined well with fellow South American Marcelinho as Pune looked for the elusive goal in the match.
Marcelo Pereira (7/10) - Marcelinho, who was back into the starting lineup after his suspension was the major creative source for the home side as he played on the right side of the midfield. He cut in from the flank into the box and created some chances and had shots on the goal as well.
Isaac Vanmalsawma (4.5/10) - The midfielder came on to replace Ashique Kuruniyan early on in the second half.
Jonatan Lucca (4.5/10) - The Brazilian midfielder came on for the final ten minutes as Pune kept looking for inspiration for the first goal in the match.
Marcos Tebar (1/10) - The midfielder came on for the final minute of the match as Pune made the last change of the match in the dying seconds.