Sunday, February 26, 2017 Report by
East Bengal Batters BFC & Reinstates Position ATOP.
“In any war, there are calms between storms. There will be days when we lose faith. Days when our allies turn against us...but the day will never come that we forsake
this planet and its people.” A quote from a famous movie that complements Kingfisher East Bengal's performance at Sree Kanteerava Stadium when they turned the tide against the blues by thumping them 3-1 in their own backyard, notching up 3 vital points & 7th win in I-League 2016-2017. This was till date the best performance showcased by the Red & Gold outfit, who scripted their best away win against BFC.
It was nicely poised for both the teams who locked horns had earlier experienced a bad patch in I-League 2016-2017 needing to get back to winning ways.
The match started with the West Block Blues showing their support for the home side combined with East Bengal travelling fans trying to match their counterpart. Chants, songs, banners all were at the display with both teams raring to go at each other.
The first few minutes saw both teams creating chances but failing to convert it. The best goal of I-League 2016-2017 campaign till date came in 22nd minute of the match when Ivan Bukenya passed a ball to Wedson Anselme who then made a surging run forward through the right flank cutting back just outside the box dribbled past Juan & curled a beautiful left-footed past a clueless Arindam Bhattacharya making it 1-0 for the visitors. The Bengaluru outfit looked stunned & upped their ante with a flurry of attacks but failed to convert when it mattered the most. Chris Payne missed a glorious opportunity when his shot was saved by the BFC custodian after Rowlin had played a sensational through ball from the right flank.
At half time the match looks nicely poised with Alberto Roca's side finishing strong. The second half started with Bengaluru dominating position & play. Against the run in the 53rd minute of play Wedson again showed why he is one of the valuable addition to the squad. He picked up a pass & dribbled to see his shot being deflected by a BFC defender fell for N.Pujary who then played a pass back for onrushing skipper Robert played a peach of a cross towards a lurking Robin Singh who made no mistake heading it to make 2-0. The former Bengaluru frontman didn't celebrate his goal as a beautiful gesture shown towards his former teammates & club. It seemed a lighting has struck BFC & their title hopes out of the blues. 6 minutes later Robin Singh made it 3-0 for the visitors. A beautiful cross by Rowlin Borges that Chris Payne chested down fro onrushing Robin Singh. Roca's tactics had faltered yet again against his English counterpart.
After taking a 3-0 lead East Bengal made a few changes & went into a nutshell, while Roca went out for all out attack bringing on Mandar Rao Desai & E.Lyngdoh. Consistent pressure combined with flurries of attack paid off when Udanta Singh played a pass for C.K Vineeth who restored some pride tapping it in to make 3-1.
The match saw Bengaluru FC players often losing their cool with hard tackles , scuffles with referee & East Bengal players. Sunil Chettri & Sandesh Jhinghan was lucky enough to be on field till the end of the macth. Even post match saw Bengaluru FC custodian Arindam Bhattacharya getting involved into a scuffle with East Bengal's assistant coach Warren Hackett.
TJM must be happy with his boys ouclassing the defending champions in their own backyard & reinstating their pole position that looked to be in threat after Aizwal FC had earlier beaten Chennai City FC 1-0 at home. The only cause of worry would be Wedson Anselme who limped off with an injury in the 53rd minute of the match. With Wiilis Plaza already nursing an injury Wedson's injury might be a headache for TJM in the upcoming fixtures. The next challenge awaits East Bengal in hills when they will take on Lajong FC in an away encounter.
With team notching up their best away win against the defending champions it would be quite interesting to see what the fans & club officials who earlier criticised the team because of their dismal performance in last 3 matches has to say.