Bengaluru v Mumbai City Match Report, 19/11/2017

2 - 0
Edu García (67)
S. Chhetri (90+3)
Sree Kanteerava Stadium
ISL 2017: Bengaluru FC 2-0 Mumbai City FC - Blues down Islanders in comfortable debut win
19:38 EAT 19/11/2017
Edu Garcia Bengaluru FC
Dream debut for Bengaluru FC in ISL as they beat Mumbai City FC 2-0 at Kanteerava Stadium....

Bengaluru FC beat Mumbai City FC 2-0 in their first ever Indian Super League (ISL) match at the Kanteerava Stadium, Bengaluru on Sunday. Spanish winger Edu Garcia and skipper Sunil Chhetri scored for the home side.

Blues boss Albert Roca fielded his team in an unusual 4-4-2 formation with skipper Sunil Chhetri partnering Venezuelan striker Miku upfront. Edu Garcia was fielded in place of injured Demas Delgado and the Spaniard started on the left flank. Udanta Singh was deployed on the right.

Alexandre Guimaraes’s side lined up in a 4-2-3-1 formation with three foreigners in the backline. Avinash Ruidas and Sanju Pradhan were deployed on the flanks while Leo Costa started in behind striker Everton Santos. Youngster Sahil Tavora was given a start alongside Sehnaj Singh in the central midfield.

The home side controlled the game from the very beginning and dominated the possession. They played free-flowing football and constantly knocked on the doors of Mumbai City FC.

The away side were struck with a heavy blow with an injury to Leo Costa in the 10th minute of the game. Costa initially received treatment and was back in the game but he could not continue for long. Former Cameroon international Achille Emana replaced the Brazilian attacking midfielder.

Sunil Chhetri had the first major chance to score in the 22nd minute. Udanta ran down the right flank and fed Miku at the edge of the box. The striker curled in a cross which the skipper attempted to volley but it went wide of the goal.

The home team should have been up by at least one or two goals in the first half had their attackers been a little more clinical. The teams went into the break with the scoreline flashing 0-0 at the Kanteerava Stadium.

Mumbai City FC introduced Mehrajuddin Wadoo in the second half who replaced Sahil Tavora. Wadoo shifted to the right back position while defender Raju Gaikwad advanced to partner Sehnaj Singh in the central midfield. The change clearly reflected Guimaraes’ approach to the game.

Bengaluru kept on pressing in the attacking third with Garcia and Udanta constantly creating chances from the flanks. Roca made a crucial change in the 64th minute by introducing Toni Dovale in place of midfielder Erik Paartalu. It proved to be a masterstroke as Bengaluru took the lead within two minutes.

Amrinder Singh goofed up inside the box as he failed to judge the bounce and conceded a silly corner from an otherwise harmless move. From the resulting corner, Edu Garcia scored a stunning goal beating Amrinder at his near post.

The Blues never lost their grip on the game and continued to dictate proceedings in the last half an hour. They looked hungry for a second goal while The Islanders lacked intent. Guimaraes’ ultra-defensive tactics did not help his team after going down in the last quarter of the game.

The three points were secured in the final minutes of the game when captain Sunil Chhetri netted in the second goal taking advantage of a mix up between Mehrajuddin Wadoo and Amrinder Singh. Chhetri paid perfect tribute to his former club Mumbai City FC by not celebrating the winning goal.

It was an impressive performance from the ISL debutants who kicked off in style with a win at their fortress.