Wednesday, Jul 06, 2022

ISL 2021-22: Bengaluru FC Stun Kerala Blasters To Keep Top-four Hopes Alive

Roshan Naorem scored the all-important goal to help former champions Bengaluru FC beat Kerala Blasters in their Indian Super League 2021-22 match.

Bengaluru FC's Roshan Naorem celebrates after scoring a goal against Kerala Blasters.
Bengaluru FC's Roshan Naorem celebrates after scoring a goal against Kerala Blasters. Photo: Indian Super League

A resurgent Bengaluru FC spoilt Kerala Blasters' chance to go top of the Indian Super League (ISL) 202-22 points table with a 1-0 win at Tilak Maidan, Margao in Goa on Sunday. (More Football News)

Roshan Naorem scored the all-important goal in the 56th minute to give the 2018–19 champions their fifth win of the season. With 20 points from 14 matches, Bengaluru also kept their ISL playoff hopes alive.

Kerala, despite the defeat, are still nestled inside the top-four with 20 points from five wins. But they have played only 12 matches. Leaders Hyderabad, with 23 points from 13, will play struggling NorthEast FC on Monday.

Roshan's brilliant strike ended Kerala Blasters' 10-game unbeaten run and break into the top-four for the first time this season.

After a barren first half, Roshan scored a sumptuous free kick in the 56th minute to break the deadlock. This was Kerala's second defeat of the season.

Playing after more than two weeks, Kerala looked rusty in the opening exchanges with Bengaluru looking the more threatening side.

Danish Farooq and Prince Ibara came close to scoring but could not keep their efforts on target before Jorge Diaz's botched clearance hit Sunil Chhetri and almost went in but an alert Nishu Kumar cleared the ball off the line.

Both the defences kept things tight as a cagey half came to an end with the scoreboard reading 0-0.

Bengaluru deserved a goal all along and it came from a piece of individual brilliance early into the second half. 
Roshan, brilliant throughout the game and the season, curled in a delightful free-kick from just outside the box, his magical left foot sending the ball past a diving Prabhsukhan Gill and in the back of the net.

Kerala tried hard to draw level but lacked the cutting edge that they have displayed this season. Harmanjot Khabra powered a volley straight at Gurpreet Singh Sandhu while moments later the Bengaluru goalie was called into action again, smothering an Adrian Luna shot after he was set up by Diaz from the left-wing.

Bengaluru came agonisingly close to doubling their lead but substitute Cleiton Silva saw his effort tipped away for a corner at the far post by Gill.

Udanta Kumam then set up Bruno Silva but his effort flew over the bar as Bengaluru pushed hard to make it 2-0.

Kerala Blasters next play NorthEast United on February 4, while Bengaluru face Jamshedpur FC the following day.


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