FC Goa’s hopes of gaining a playoff spot were ripped apart in harsh circumstances after a 1-3 loss to Bengaluru FC (BFC) in their Indian Super League (ISL) match here on Thursday.
FC Goa, which needed a win in this last league stage match to progress to the next round, came undone when BFC scored a contentious second goal. N. Sivasakthi pounced on a rebound to slot home, but replays suggested that the striker was offside.
Despite strong protests from the FC Goa players and coaching staff, the referee awarded the goal to BFC. FC Goa’s Edu Badia and Noah Wail gave the referee an angry mouthful, while assistant coach Gorka Azkorra received a red card for his persistent objection.
The goal completely deflated FC Goa, which had the momentum until that point. A few minutes later, a perfectly placed strike by BFC substitute Pablo Perez completed FC Goa’s misery.
The match hung in the balance in the first-half, when both sides traded blows. Sivasakthi put BFC ahead with a header off a corner in the sixth minute. FC Goa struck back in the 33rd minute, with Iker Guarrotxena connecting with a header of his own.
FC Goa started the second-half with an unmistakable urgency to find the net. But in a twist of fate, the side found itself out of the tournament.
The win helped BFC gain a home leg in the playoff round.
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