AFC Cup: Bengaluru FC secures last-16 spot

Goals from Eugeneson Lyngdoh and Kim Song Yong carried BFC through as the second-placed team in Group 'H' (behind Malaysian favourite Johor Darul Ta'zim FC), knocking Toyota out of the tournament in the process.

Eugeneson Lyngdoh, who received the 'Best Midfielder of I-League' award, was the star performer for home side Bengaluru FC.   -  K. Murali Kumar

Bengaluru FC (BFC) sealed an AFC Cup last-16 berth with a 2-1 victory over Lao Toyota FC at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium here on Wednesday.

Goals from Eugeneson Lyngdoh and Kim Song Yong carried BFC through as the second-placed team in Group 'H' (behind Malaysian favourite Johor Darul Ta'zim FC), knocking Toyota out of the tournament in the process.

The visitor, however, did not make things easy for BFC. After goals from Eugeneson Lyngdoh (45+1') and Kim Song Yong (60') put the Bengaluru team 2-0 ahead, Toyota pulled one back when Japanese striker Kazuo Homma found the net in the 66th minute. Seconds later, a livid BFC coach Ashley Westwood was sent off for arguing with the referee.

Performance Analyst and Head of Youth Development Matt Holland, who stepped in for Westwood, explained, "The foul was made and the free-kick was given against us. The Toyota players advanced the ball about 10 yards forward, so we were disappointed. When Toyota scored off the free-kick, Westwood had a slight altercation with the referee, and was sent off."

Before Homma's pinpoint header and the unexpected expulsion, BFC seemed to be cruising through. Just before half-time, a cross from Michael Collins was nodded home by Eugeneson. After the restart, BFC doubled down when Sunil Chhetri laid the ball off for an unmarked Yong, who had little trouble notching up his sixth goal of the season.

The pacy Udanta Singh, meanwhile, proved to be a handful for the Toyota defence. The 19-year-old from Manipur frequently whizzed past his markers in one-on-one situations, and was unlucky to not find his name on the scoresheet.

The result:

Bengaluru FC 2 (Eugeneson Lyngdoh 45+1', Kim Song Yong 60') bt Lao Toyota FC 1 (Kazuo Homma 67').

  Dugout videos