Bengaluru FC held by Bashundhara Kings, bows out of AFC Cup

Bengaluru FC bowed out of the 2021 AFC Cup following a goalless draw against Bashundhara Kings in Male.

REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE: Bengaluru FC is now third in Group D, with Bashundhara and ATK Mohun Bagan above it.   -  Getty Images

Bengaluru FC bowed out of the 2021 AFC Cup following a goalless draw against Bashundhara Kings in Male on Saturday. The result kept the Marco Pezzaiuoli-coached side third in Group D (one point), with Bashundhara and ATK Mohun Bagan both above.

HIGHLIGHTS - Bengaluru FC v Bashundhara Kings

On the day, Pezzaiuoli made three changes to the side that lost to ATKMB, with Parag Shrivas, Danish Farooq and Bidyashagar Singh replacing Sarthak Golui, Ajay Chhetri and Udanta Singh. Bashundhara fielded an unchanged side from the 2-0 win over Maziya S&RC.

Both sides had periods where they held the upper hand but neither could break the deadlock. On 24 minutes, Cleiton Silva’s ball into the box was met by a diving Yrondu Musavu-King but his header went straight into Bashundhara goalie Anisur Rahman’s gloves. At the other end, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu got his palms to Jonathan Reis’ effort from outside the box.

On the stroke of halftime, BFC earned a freekick after a foul on Silva, but couldn’t capitalise. Bashundhara came close to taking the lead in the 57th minute through Brazilian winger Robinho whose effort deflected off Gurpreet’s foot and was sailing goalward until Naorem Roshan Singh’s acrobatic effort and Gurpreet’s outstretched arm kept the ball from going in.

Towards the end, Silva, Jayesh Rane and skipper Sunil Chhetri all tried to break the game open, but the Bashundhara defence held strong. BFC will play Maziya S&RC in its final Group D game on Tuesday.

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