Powered by a strong home crowd, the Kerala Blasters continued their climb in the ISL ladder, moving from sixth to fourth, after defeating Bengaluru FC 3-2 at the Nehru Stadium here on Sunday.
Having won their last four games, the Blasters appeared confident. They looked dangerous as they frequently advanced through the right but it was Bengaluru which took the lead in the 14 th minute through a penalty after its captain Sunil Chhetri was brought down by goalkeeper Prabhsukhan Gill.
Ten minutes later, Blasters found the equaliser following an Adrian Luna freekick from outside the box. It rebounded off the left post and Sandeep Singh took it nicely and sent a cross from the right and an alert Mark Leskovic tapped it into a corner giving goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh no chance.
The Blasters took the lead just before the break. Adrian Luna crept up through the left and sent a smart cross into the box. Bengaluru defender Sandesh Jhingan’s attempt to stop it was unsuccessful and Blasters’ Greek forward Diamantakos Dimitrios slammed it home.
And in the 68 th minute, Australian midfielder Apostolos Giannou came off the bench and almost immediately increased the Blasters’ lead after being put through by Diamantakos. With a defender chasing him, Giannou ran in, evaded goalkeeper Gurpreet and scored with an angled shot.
There was a bit of anxiety in the home camp when Bengaluru’s Javier reduced the margin with a fiery shot 10 minutes from the end but the Blasters stayed strong to win their fifth straight game.
The result: Kerala Blasters 3 (Mark Leskovic 25, Diamantakos Dimitrios 43, Apostolos Giannou 70) bt Bengaluru FC 2 (Sunil Chhetri 14-p, Javier Hernandez 81).
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