Rino Anto 'deeply hurt' at anti-Kerala Blasters chants by Bengaluru FC fans

While it was a night to remember for the Bengaluru FC players and fans, it was not so for ex-Bengaluru player Rino Anto...

Wednesday night was certainly another glorious night in Bengaluru FC's short but proud history as they managed a 3-0 win over North Korea's 4.25 SC in the first leg of their Inter-Zonal semifinals, which almost assures them of a place in the next round. 

With such a momentous game taking place, former Bengaluru FC stars like Rino Anto and CK Vineeth who were instrumental in the Blues' march to the final of the AFC Cup in 2016 were all present to cheer on their former team. 

Rino Anto Bengaluru FC Aizawl FC I-League

However, it turned out to be a bittersweet night for the duo with a section of the Bengaluru FC fans, known for their vociferous support, coming up with a chant against their current team Kerala Blasters. The circumstances under which the Bengaluru FC fans came to bring up a chant against the Kochi-based team are unknown but it certainly seems to have pained Rino Anto who was picked by Kerala Blasters in the ISL Player Draft, after having spent four years with the Blues. 

The Kerala-born player was present in the stands when the chants in question were sung by the Bengaluru FC. The 29-year-old full-back expressed his hurt at the chants after the game through a post on his social media page. 

Article continues below

A number of Kerala Blasters fan pages also seem to have taken the chant against their team seriously, leading to some amount of social media banter. Manjappada, one of the largest fan groups of the Sachin Tendulkar co-owned team even went on to claim that the Kanteerava stadium will witness its highest ever attendance.

One thing is for sure, when these two teams clash in the upcoming Indian Super League (ISL), sparks are bound to fly with tensions between the fan groups reaching a crescendo.