A 10-man Bengaluru delivered a dominant performance to beat Goa 3-0 in a top-of-the-table clash in the 2018-19 Indian Super League (ISL) on Thursday at the Kanteerava Stadium.
Nishu Kumar was sent off for a second yellow card in the 42nd minute. However, Juanan (50'), Udanta Singh (58') and Miku (69') scored as the hosts turned the game around in the second half to seal three points and the top spot on the ISL table with one game left.
Bengaluru FC made two changes to the team that went down 3-2 in Delhi, with Albert Serran and Boithang Haokip making way for Rino Anto and Luisma Villa. FC Goa remained unchanged from their emphatic win over Kerala Blasters.
The visitors made the first real attempt on goal as Ahmed Jahouh tried from distance after Dimas Delgado gave away possession. The ball struck the frame of the goal bounced back into play.
Bengaluru’s first shot on target had to wait until the 15th minute but they failed to really test Naveen Kumar. The shot from Xisco Hernandez was at the end of a good passage of play which saw Luisma ease past a couple of bodies before setting the Spaniard up.
Moments later, Miku was through on goal, but at a tight angle after Xisco broke the last line of defence with a sublime chip. The hosts were on the front foot after a couple of promising spells of play.
The visitors were handed a significant advantage before heading into the break after Nishu Kumar was shown a second yellow card for dissent after a rather tame challenge on Jackichand Singh.
The hosts did well to respond by testing Kumar just before the break. Xisco bent a freekick to find Khabra’s head but the Goan custodian had his reflexes on point to deny the hosts.
The game deserved a set-piece goal and that’s what it got in the 50th minute when Xisco floated one in from a freekick to find Miku. The Venezuelan flicked it on to Juanan Gonzalez, who struck it hard and clean right into the back of the net.
The Blues pressed high and hard and the inevitable second goal arrived in the 58th minute in the form of an Udanta Singh strike. Dimas Delgado lobbed a pass behind the Goan backline and the winger made short work of Kumar in the one-on-one situation that ensued.
Miku removed any doubts regarding the outcome of the game in the 69th minute after he used the fact that Kumar was off his line to his advantage and slotted one into the top corner from distance.
The game ended 3-0 in Bengaluru’s favour, with the team that took their chances bagging all three points and Goa left to rue all the missed opportunities.