ISL 2020-21: Eze goal gives Jamshedpur win over Bengaluru

ISL 2020: Stephen Eze scored his third goal of the season to power Jamshedpur FC to a 1-0 win over Bengaluru FC on Monday.

Stephen Eze

Jamshedpur FC's Stephen Eze celebrates scoring the winner against Bengaluru FC in the ISL on Monday.   -  ISL/Sportzpics

A header from Stephen Eze 11 minutes from time earned Jamshedpur FC a 1-0 win over Bengaluru FC at the Fatorda Stadium on Monday.

The Nigerian’s third strike of the Indian Super League (ISL 2020-21)  season helped his side leapfrog Bengaluru into third position with 13 points, and left coach Carles Cuadrat to digest back-to-back defeats for the first time in the ISL since February-March 2019.

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With just over 10 minutes left, midfielder Alex Lima, a vibrant presence all through the evening, released Aniket Jadhav on the right. The 20-year-old whipped in a fine cross which Eze attacked bravely ahead of Bengaluru’s burly defender Juanan and was duly rewarded.

Stephen Eze

Stephen Eze now has three goals to his name this season.   -  ISL/Sportzpics

 

Rahul Bheke could have salvaged a point for Bengaluru, but his header from point-blank range in the 85th minute was fisted away by Jamshedpur’s T. P. Rehenesh.

Bengaluru paid for its profligacy in the first half. Just after the half-hour mark, Suresh Wangjam started a move from midfield and after exchanging passes with Sunil Chhetri and Kristian Opseth he found himself with only Rehenesh to beat.

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The 20-year-old unselfishly chose to square it for Cleiton Silva to tap into the empty net but the pass was weak and Rehenesh recovered ground. Immediately after, Chhetri sent a fine cut-back by Wangjam from the left wing wide.

T. P. Rehenesh

Jamshedpur FC 'keeper T. P. Rehenesh makes a fantastic save to deny Cleiton Silva.

 

Jamshedpur’s chances were less clear-cut. In the 17th minute, an unmarked Nerijus Valskis skied a low cross from Jadhav and in the very next minute the Lithuanian was thwarted by an excellent tackle from Bheke.

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On the stroke of half-time, Jackichand Singh’s header off a fine floated cross from Jadhav hit Bengaluru goalkeeper Gurpreet Sandhu’s hand and miraculously bounced over the bar. In the 62nd minute Gurpreet came up with a superb reflex save to deny defender Peter Hartley from close range when the latter tried a toe-poke after a goal-mouth scramble.

But even the India custodian’s best efforts couldn’t keep Bengaluru afloat.

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