ISL 2018: Bengaluru FC maintains perfect record against Kerala Blasters

Bengaluru FC secured a 2-1 victory on Monday to maintain its unbeaten record against Kerala Blasters in the Indian Super League.

Bengaluru FC skipper Sunil Chhetri scores the opener during his side's Indian Super League clash against Kerala Blasters on Monday.   -  ISL MEDIA

A Nikola Krcmarevic own goal saw Kerala Blasters slump to its first defeat in fifth season of Indian Super League at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium on Monday. The 2-1 win saw Bengaluru FC maintain its perfect record against Kerala Blasters and notch its fourth win in five matches. Kerala Blasters still awaits its first win at home.

The home side began the match on an attacking note. K. Prasanth and Seiminlen Doungel worked in tandem to test the Bengaluru defence early. Gradually, the visitor took control of the midfield with Dimas Delgado and Udanta Singh working the ball nicely along the right flank to exert pressure on Kochi defence.

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Bengaluru's first chance came from the right when Erik Paartalu’s shot beat custodian Naveen. But Lalruatthara cleared it away from the goalline to avert the danger.

Kerala Blasters fans held a protest march outside the stadium before kick off to voice their displeasure regarding the poor refereeing decisions against their team in the ISL. However, it had little impact on the match as Bengaluru FC took the lead from a controversial off-side goal.

 

Miku chipped the ball to Bengaluru FC captain Sunil Chhetri, who appeared to be in an off-side position. Chhetri beat his marker Sandesh Jhingan to place the ball into the net for the opening goal in the 17th minute.

Kerala Blasters pushed hard in search of the equaliser and exerted pressure on rival goal from both flanks. The Bengaluru goal had a close shave in 19th minute when Doungel side netted a glorious chance after receiving a teasing cross from Prashant.

The home side restored parity in the 30th minute when Nishu Kumar brought down Sahal Samad in the box. Slavisla Stojanovic buried the resulting penalty into the net to score his third goal of the season.

Kerala Blasters' Slavisla Stojanovic celebrates after scoring the equaliser against Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League on Monday.   -  ISL MEDIA

 

The second half was delayed by 25 minutes due to a technical snag which resulted in the malfunctioning of one of the floodlights. Both sides created enough chances in the second half with CK Vineeth missing a lovely chance misplaced his pass after being played in on goal Prasanth in the 77th minute.

The match winner came in the 80th minute when the ball ricocheted off Krcmarevic and rolled into the net after goalkeeper Naveen had parried a first time shot from substitute Holicharan Nazaray.

The win takes Bengaluru FC to the top of the ISL table, while Kerala Blasters remains in the sixth position.