Bengaluru earned their first away win in dramatic fashion away to Salgaocar which saw them leapfrog their Goan counterparts at the top of the table.Bengaluru FC topped the I-League table having earned their first away win in a 2-1 victory over Salgaocar FC at the Duler Stadium in a round 11 encouter on Tuesday afternoon.
John Menyongar's 21st minute strike was cancelled out by Gilbert Oliveira two minutes later. Beikhokhei Beingaichho then put the visitors away in the 57th minute and Pawan Kumar saved an injury-time penalty to secure all three points for the away team.
The Steelmen had their defense arranged well in the opening exchanges as Custis Osano contained the threat of Francis Fernandes.
However, it didn't take long for Bengaluru FC to surge ahead while Thoi Singh could have done better to direct a Sunil Chhetri cross on target before Gilbert Oliveira's effort at the opposite end took a huge deflection following some good work by Francis.
Chhetri then put Karanjit Singh to work in the 12th minute and the Salgaocar custodian dealt with the danger in a rather unorthodox manner while Robin Singh was kept in check by Augustin Fernandes.
The visitors managed to draw first blood in their maiden fixture in Goa when John Menyongar curled his shot inside the far post from the left after he was found by a pass from Thoi Singh in the 21st minute.
The equaliser from the Green and Whites was almost instantaneous as Oliveira collected a loose ball in the opponent's half and fired it past Pawan Kumar.
Matthew Foschini could have put the home side ahead two minutes later, but the Australian's volley from a corner-kick, although well struck, went over the bar.
Salgaocar picked up the tempo and created a couple more chances including one that saw Clifton Dias, Francis Fernandes and Claude Gnakpa combining well. The Ivorian-born French striker however, was stopped in his tracks by John Johnson and the teams went into the break level at 1-1.
Five minutes into the second period, Chhetri came close when he nearly snuck in a shot from the left but it went wide of the post. The Indian skipper was then thwarted by the goalkeeper from a free-kick.
Bengaluru were back in front in the 57th minute, though. In a move initiated by Chhetri, Thoi Singh sent in a cross from the left flank and Beikhokhei Beingaichho was on hand to supply the finish.
Both teams proceeded to attack with vigour but the contest soon turned into a physical conflict as Menyongar picked up a yellow card for a rough tackle which produced a heated reaction from Foschini in the 63rd minute.
The game continued with its physical theme as Siam Hanghal was next to go into the book but three minutes from regulation time, the hosts had an opportunity to get back on level terms. Foschini found Gilbert on the left but Milagres failed to connect with the ball that came off the goalkeeper and the away side were able to scramble it away.
Salgaocar squander an even better opportunity in injury time. Milagres was inches away from meeting Fancis' inviting cross as he slid in with his right foot when he would probably have reached it with his left.
In the last move of the game, Johnson brought down Darryl Duffy in the box and the referee pointed to the spot. However, Pawan Kumar saved the striker's penalty which could have been the Scot's 100th career goal and the final whistle soon followed in what was a dramatic end to the game.
The 2-1 win is Bengaluru's first away win after four attempts and takes them above Salgaocar at the top of the table in accordance with the head-to-head rule although Pune FC could leapfrog them if they beat Dempo SC away.
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