The Indian champions suffered a defeat in their opening group E encounter against the ISL winners...
Jacksen Tiago deployed a 3-5-2 formation with talisman Boaz Solossa paired up with Eddie Foday Boakay. On the other hand, Mariano Dias opted for a 4-4-2 formation with Balwant Singh partnering Anthony Wolfe in attack.
It was the visiting side who had the first opportunity when Balwant Singh’s header from a Saran Singh corner-kick went wide.
Midfielder Yutinus Pae had a chance to shoot from close range but his attempt went into the orbit.
The home side managed to find the back of the net but the linesman raised his flag for an offside in the 39th minute. The very next minute Boaz Solossa tested Arindam Bhattacharya in goal who did well to avert the danger.
Churchill were restricted to long range efforts and Lenny Rodrigues’ shot from 25 metres out went sailing into the sky.
After the break, the visitors suffered from fatigue with humidity playing its part. It took just four minutes after the restart for Boaz Solossa to break the deadlock as he comfortably slotted home from a Yohanes Pahabol pass.In the 62nd minute, Pahabol doubled his side's lead after receiving a pass from Ronny Beroparay. Six minutes later, Pahabol received the ball from Imanuel Wanggai and took a shot from outside the box which rebounded off the crossbar, much to the relief of the Churchill keeper Arindam Bhattacharya. Meanwhile Lukas W. Mandowen should have done much better in the 74th minute as he managed to scuff his shot with only the keeper to beat.
The Goan giants kept losing possession on a number of occasions and failed to threaten the opposition citadel. Coach Mariano Dias made a couple of changes with Richard Costa and Ashley Fernandes coming on for Bineesh Balan and Abdelhamid Shabana.
That seemed to have done the trick as thereafter there were a couple of decent opportunities created.
In a quick counterattack, Churchill moved forward but found it difficult to move through the centre. As a result, Costa took a long shot that sailed over the crossbar. A couple of minutes later, Lenny Rodrigues attempted the same with the ball going into the hands of the goalkeeper Jae-Hoon.
In the 89th minute, Balwant Singh had the ball in good position with at least three Churchill players available for a pass. However the former JCT striker chose to shoot but experienced defender Bio Paulin neutralized the impending threat easily.
The scoreline remained the same until the end as Persipura held on to register a victory over the Indian champions.
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