ISL 2020-21 highlights: Bengaluru FC beats SC East Bengal 2-0

ISL 2020-21, SCEB vs BFC Updates: Get all the Indian Super League news, score and commentary from the game between SC East Bengal and Bengaluru FC at Tilak Maidan.

Bengaluru FC players get together after their second goal against SC East Bengal in the 2020-21 Indian Super League in Goa on Tuesday.   -  ISL/SPORTZPICS

This is Sportstar's match blog/highlights of the ISL 2020-21 encounter between SC East Bengal and Bengaluru FC which was played in Goa on Tuesday.

That brings us to the end of our ISL coverage for the day. We will be back tomorrow when Kerala Blasters FC takes on Mumbai City FC at the GMC Stadium in Bambolim. [MATCH PREVIEW] Until then, it is goodnight from us!

MATCH REPORT | ISL 2020-21: Bengaluru trounces SC East Bengal, secures first win in nine games

Bengaluru FC full-back Rahul Bheke claims the 'Winning Pass of the Game' award in tonight's outing against SC East Bengal, while his teammate and skipper -- Sunil Chhetri -- takes home the 'Player of the Match' honour.

SCEB head coach Robbie Fowler: It was a very tough game. This is probably our worst performance of the year. Bengaluru was the only team fighting today. Some of our players had a very bad game. If you are given opportunities you need to take them. It was extremely disappointing to see us fail on the field. Mathematically, it's difficult for us to make the playoffs. But we still have a minor chance. Bengaluru FC played really well and they executed their plans to perfection. They made life very difficult for us. There are two new players coming in soon. Hopefully, all players in the squad compete hard with each other and put on a fight in the last five games.

ALSO READ | ISL 2020-21 top-scorers list: FC Goa's Angulo leads Golden Boot race; Krishna second, Valskis third

BFC goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh: We finally got a clean sheet after 11 games. I feel very happy and the team deserves this. We've been having a bad time in the last few games. So this will be a big boost for us to do well in the future. We had a system in place to tackle SC East Bengal tonight. We decided to play lots of long balls and I'm glad that it paid off. The current situation is different for players like Sunil Chhetri and Udanta Singh because they haven't experienced this in seven years at the club. But for me, even when I was in Norway (with Stabaek), there were relegation battles. Hence, it allows me to keep the guys going by motivating them time and again.

Post-match reaction from both the camps will be coming up next.....

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS:

With this victory, Bengaluru moves to 18 points and climbs up to the sixth spot in the ISL standings, above Jamshedpur FC on goal difference. Meanwhile, East Bengal stays in tenth with 13 points from 15 outings.

RELATED | ISL 2020-21: Points table, goals scored, goal difference - Bengaluru ends winless run, climbs to sixth spot

SCEB was never really in the game, managing zero shots on target tonight. Cleiton Silva gave BFC the lead early on in the first half, while an own goal from goalkeeper Debjit Majumder doubled the lead for The Blues.

Bengaluru FC finally bags a victory in the 2020-21 Indian Super League after eight matches. The team also has its first clean sheet in 12 games after defeating SC East Bengal 2-0 in match 80 of the ongoing ISL edition.

AND IT'S FULL-TIME! FINAL SCORE: SC EAST BENGAL 0 - 2 BENGALURU FC!!!

90+3' YELLOW CARDS! There's a huge tussle here with multiple players from both sides involved. In the end, the two main people at the centre of action -- Anthony Pilkington (SCEB) and Rahul Bheke (BFC) -- are booked by the referee.

90' Five minutes of stoppage time to be added on at the end of the second half! Anthony Pilkington receives the ball inside the box after a mini game of pinball. But he is unable to fire a good shot on target. The clock is running down as SC East Bengal wastes chance after chance.

88' CHANGE! Bengaluru FC manager Naushad Moosa makes another substitution here. He brings on Xisco Hernandez to replace Cleiton Silva on the field.

85' WHAT A CHANCE! SCEB defender Rana Gharami makes a mess of a straightforward clearance. BFC striker Sunil Chettri dispossesses him and takes the ball forward. He sees East Bengal custodian Debjit Majumder coming off his line and takes a shot from just outside the box. The ball hits the top of the crossbar and comes back into play. SCEB finally gets it back.

82' THROW-IN FOR SCEB! Narayan Das tries to go for a long throw into the box. But his throw is too close to Bengaluru shot-stopper Gurpreet Singh, who collects the ball with ease.

79' SCEB COUNTER-ATTACK! East Bengal wins back possession after a throw-in by Bengaluru full-back Rahul Bheke. Bright Enobakhare leads the charge and he has Jacques Maghoma for support. However, Ankit Mukherjee, in an attempt to cross the ball from the right flank, loses the ball cheaply.

76' AND IT'S TIME FOR THE FINAL DRINKS BREAK OF THE GAME!

73' SHOT! Aaron Amadi-Holloway makes a good turn after receiving a pass from midfield. However, his final shot is directed straight at Bengaluru goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh.

71' SUBSTITUTIONS! Robbie Fowler has exhausted his changes for SC East Bengal. He makes another double substitution by bringing on Anthony Pilkington and Milan Singh for Matti Steinmann and Ajay Chhetri in the middle.

68' The SC East Bengal players have been stitching together loads of short passes here. They have a good majority of the possession. But the forwards have failed with their finishing up front.

65' YELLOW CARD! Finally, the referee hands out his first booking of the match. The goal scorer Cleiton Silva had clipped SCEB midfielder Matti Steinmann. Bengaluru FC has been physically aggressive tonight, committing several fouls.

62' OFFSIDE! The SCEB substitute Yumnam Singh was a little too eager to get to a pass at the edge of the box and the linesman raises his flag. However, replays show that the East Bengal man was clearly onside.

60' FREE-KICK FOR SCEB! This set-piece is in its own half. BFC captain Sunil Chhetri fouled Bright Enobakhare during a counter-attack. 

57' ANOTHER SCEB CHANGE! Wahengbam Luwang makes way for Yumnam Singh on the field. East Bengal head coach Fowler looks extremely animated on the sideline.

54' SCEB CHANCE! Matti Steinmann plays a ball towards Jacques Maghoma, who takes a touch and gets into the box. But his touch is too heavy as it reaches BFC keeper Gurpreet Singh. However, Maghoma and Gurpreet collide as the latter drops the ball. The referee blows his whistle for a foul.

51' FOUL! Bengaluru FC winger Udanta Singh brings down SC East Bengal attacker Bright Enobakhare from behind. But the referee doesn't book him. There have been no yellow cards so far.

48' SUBSTITUTION! SC East Bengal manager Robbie Fowler makes a double change straightaway. He brings on Jacques Maghoma and Rana Gharami to replace skipper Daniel Fox and Indian forward Harmanpreet Singh in the middle.

THE SECOND HALF IS UNDERWAY!

Forty-five minutes to go. Stay tuned!

Cleiton Silva celebrates his opening goal for Bengaluru FC against SC East Bengal with his teammates at the Tilak Maidan Stadium in Vasco da Gama.   -  ISL/SPORTZPICS

 

Bengaluru FC took the lead via Cleiton Silva as early as the 11th minute of the game. A Debjit Majumder-own goal doubled the lead for the Blues in the last minute of the first half.

AND IT'S HALF-TIME! SCORE: SC EAST BENGAL 0 - 2 BENGALURU FC!!!

45+3' Three minutes of stoppage time was added on at the end of the first half. SC East Bengal tries to execute a counter-attack but the Bengaluru FC bus deals with it conveniently.

45' GOOOOAAAALLLL!!!!! DEBJIT MAJUMDER SCORES AN OWN GOAL!!! BENGALURU FC 2 - 0 SC EAST BENGAL! Rahul Bheke received an amazing through-ball on the right wing. He took a few steps forward and sent a cross towards Srivas in the middle. The BFC substitute fired a shot to beat SCEB keeper Debjit. The ball hit the post, ricocheted onto Debjit and went into goal.

42' SUBSTITUTION! This is a forced change for Bengaluru FC as an injured Leon Augustin makes his way out to the dugout. Manager Naushad Moosa brings on Parag Srivas to replace his departing player.

39' Since conceding the goal, SC East Bengal has dominated the possession, passing and attacking stats. But the outfit hasn't been able to create clear-cut chances yet.

36' SCEB CHANCE! Aaron Amadi-Holloway and Francisco Gonzalez get into a tussle and the former wins the ball for East Bengal. He executes a good backheel to set up Bright Enobakhare in the final third. However, Bright isn't able to control the ball after dribbling past Pratik Chaudhari.

33' AND IT'S TIME FOR THE FIRST HALF COOLING BREAK!

31' CORNER FOR BENGALURU! The goal scorer Cleiton Silva will supply the ball from the right. None of his teammates are able to get to it as East Bengal begins a counter-attack.

29' THROW-IN FOR BFC! Rahul Bheke throws the ball towards Udanta Singh and receives it back immediately. He then sends a ceoss into the box. SCEB goalkeeper Debjit Majumder gets a hand on the ball as it goes out of play.

26' INJURY! Amadi-Holloway goes down after a clash of heads with Francisco Gonzalez. The East Bengal medical staff rush on to the field. However, the foreign attacker is cleared to continue playing.

23' CROSS! Ankit Mukherjee executes a wonderful sprint for SCEB on the right flank. He gets past an opposition player and sends a cross into the middle. But BFC goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh comes off his line to collect the ball before Aaron Amadi-Holloway could get to it.

20' FREE-KICK FOR SCEB! Bright Enobakhare will take it. The ball takes a deflection off the Bengaluru FC wall and goes out of play. East Bengal is unable to utilise the corner which follows.

17' VERY CLOSE! East Bengal was wasting too much time on the ball and Sunil Chhetri dispossessed Ajay Chhetri just outside the box. However, his quick shot misses the target by a whisker.

14' FREE-KICK FOR SCEB! Narayan Das will take the set-piece. But his shot is cleared away easily by the Bengaluru centre-back duo as the Blues regain possession.

11' GOOOOOAAAALLLLLL!!!!!! CLEITON SILVA SCORES!!! BENGALURU FC 1 - 0 SC EAST BENGAL! This was a free-kick from the other half. Sunil Chhetri overpowered SCEB defender Scott Neville and headed the ball towards Cleiton, who took a brilliant first touch and found the back of the net with his left foot.

9' CHANCE! A long ball is played towards Bengaluru forward Cleiton Silva. However, East Bengal centre-back Danny Fox makes a crucial interception for his team.

6' WHAT A TACKLE! Bright Enobakhare took the ball forward on the left wing after receiving a good through-ball from Matti Steinmann. Bright supplied a low cross across. But just when SCEB forward Harmanpreet Singh tried to get to the ball, Ajith Kumar saved the day for BFC with a brilliant tackle.

3' CROSS! Udanta Singh plays a ball back to his Bengaluru FC skipper Sunil Chettri on the right flank. The BFC captain sends a cross into the box towards Leon Augustin, who misses the target with a decent attempt.

7:30 PM: AND THE MATCH IS UNDERWAY!

7:15 PM: As SC East Bengal and Bengaluru FC gear up to square off in match 80 of the 2020-21 Indian Super League, here are all the important stats, players to watch out for and head-to-head record from fixtures featuring the two sides in the past. (FULL STORY)

7:00 PM: Can Cleiton Silva help Bengaluru FC arrest its eight-match winless run?

Cleiton Silva has been Bengaluru FC's best attacking player this season, with four goals, three assists and 25 shots in 14 appearances.   -  ISL/SPORTZPICS

 

6:45 PM: Five changes for SC East Bengal tonight! Ankit Mukherjee, Wahengbam Luwang, Harmanpreet Singh, Matti Steinmann and Aaron Amadi-Holloway have replaced Rana Gharami, Mohammed Rafique, Jeje Lalpekhlua, Jacques Maghoma and Anthony Pilkington in Robbie Fowler's lineup.

Meanwhile, there are two alterations for Bengaluru FC! The injured Juanan and the suspended Erik Paartalu have made way for Indian defenders Ajith Kumar and Pratik Chaudhari. BFC is playing only two foreigners in today's match.

6:30 PM: The team lineups are out!

SCEB XI: Debjit Majumder, Narayan Das, Scott Neville, Daniel Fox, Ankit Mukherjee, Ajay Chhetri, Matti Steinmann, Aaron Amadi-Holloway, Wahengbam Luwang, Bright Enobakhare, Harmanpreet Singh.

COACH: Robbie Fowler.

BFC XI: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Rahul Bheke, Pratik Chaudhari, Ajith Kumar, Francisco Gonzalez, Harmanjot Khabra, Cleiton Silva, Suresh Wangjam, Udanta Singh, Sunil Chhetri, Leon Augustin.

COACH: Naushad Moosa.

6:15 PM: Podcast - The merger between ATK and Mohun Bagan for ISL 2020-21 seemed like a match made in heaven, but fans didn't look pleased. Our reporters Shyam Vasudevan, Aashin Prasad and Amitabha Das Sharma delve into the reasons behind fans' displeasure and the raging hashtag #RemoveATK in the latest episode of 'The Full Time Show'.

Follow Sportstar's full coverage (Latest news, Interviews, Features, Points table, Quiz, Videos) of ISL 2020-21.

The seventh edition of the Indian Super League got underway inside a bio-bubble in Goa on November 20.

The tournament, spanning over four months, will see 11 teams play each other in a league and playoff format across three venues. Following the inclusion of SC East Bengal, this season will feature 115 games, up from 95 last season.

ISL 2020: Points Table

MATCH PREVIEW:

SC East Bengal appeared to be hard-pressed for a win as it tried to keep its playoff chances alive. The side coached by Robbie Fowler has taken the road to recovery but its success is limited by seven draws and only two wins. Currently placed 10th in the 11-team ISL line-up, East Bengal would be looking to revive its winning form when it meets former champion Bengaluru FC at the Tilak Maidan Stadium on Tuesday.

Incidentally, Fowler’s men had picked up the last win (1-0) against the same opposition in the first phase (January 9) and since then the team has been on a four-match winless streak. The team has netted just 12 goals so far, which is the second-lowest tally in the league. What East Bengal has faced in most of its recent outings is a poor rate of conversation when it comes to availing the chances in the attacking-third.

“The results will dictate that obviously (the possibility of making it to the play-offs). We go into games wanting to get the results and we'll keep trying until it is mathematically impossible to get into the top four. At the minute, it is (possible), but the results may dictate that,” Fowler said on the eve of the match.

Going by their head-to-head record across all competitions, the two teams will be meeting for the 12th time on Tuesday. The Red-and-Gold side leads the record 7-4 with five wins in the I-League and one each in the Federation Cup and ISL.

RELATED | Odisha FC sacks manager Stuart Baxter after rape analogy

“We have created a lot of chances, but with results, people will point at us and say that we need a proper centre-forward. Players never go into matches wanting to miss goals. There are lots of positives that we can take from our results. I'm happy with the players we've got,” Fowler said in the SC East Bengal club page.   

Bengaluru FC is placed seventh in the current standings which is the result of remaining winless in its last eight outings and having lost five of them. The team’s poor showing in the last few rounds tells about its shaky defending as it failed to keep a clean sheet in 11 matches. Bengaluru FC has conceded 19 goals so far which only better than Odisha FC and Kerala Blasters. This was most evident in the team's previous showing where it failed to preserve a 2-0 lead against Hyderabad FC and ended up drawing it 2-2.

Going against East Bengal, Bengaluru’s interim coach and former India campaigner Naushad Moosa will have a bigger worry in strengthening his defence with Spain’s Juan Antonio González (Juanan) and Australian Erik Paartalu set to miss the game.

“If you see the points table, it's not much of a difference,” Moosa said. “Just one win and you're there. That really motivates us and that's what is pushing us to get a positive result. Just one game, three points and we are there. We need to work hard and be there in the playoffs,” the Bengaluru FC coach tried to be optimistic ahead of the match.

ISL 2020-21 will be televised live at 7.30 pm IST on Star Sports and live streamed on Disney+Hotstar and Jio TV.