Bengaluru FC romped home to yet another victory in ISL 2017, as they overcame a stiff challenge from a 10-man FC Pune City with a 3-1 victory at the Balewadi Sports Complex, in Pune, on Thursday.
However, it was less about how clinical they were, and more about the sportsman spirit that the Blues have shown, that caught everyone’s eye during the match.
FC Pune City had taken the early lead in their home ground, through a flying header from Adil Kahn in the first half. However, things started to go downhill for the Pune side, when Baljit Sahni received his marching orders for a second bookable offence on the 56th minute.
Bengaluru capitalized on this, as their staar Venezuelan forward Miku scored a 14-minute brace, to put the former I-League champions ahead in the match. Pune pushed for the equalizing goal till the end. However, as they were down to 10 men, they were always vulnerable to BFC counter attacks, and that is exactly what happened in injury time, as Sunil Chhetri doubled Bengaluru’s lead, and put the match beyond Pune.
However, it was what he did after scoring the goal, that won the hearts of both sets of fans. Having been put through on goal by Toni Dovale, Chhetri cut past Pune keeper Vishal Kaith, and dinked the ball over a flailing Gurtej Singh to score the goal.
Gurtej, who went for a full stretch goalline clearance, looked distraught as the ball trickled over the line. Amazingly, Chhetri, instead of celebrating the goal, immediately went over to Gurtej, to console him. Miku, who was close by, also came over to console the Pune defender after the goal.
Among all the rivalry between the clubs, we often tend to forget the human side of the sport. However, Sunil Chhetri showed great spirit to take care of his opponent, rather than celebrate his goal, an attribute that further underlines his leadership qualities. Captain, leader, legend indeed!