Champions FC Goa (FCG) ended their 2022 Durand Cup campaign with a 2-2 draw against Sunil Chhetri led by Bengaluru FC (BFC) in a Group A fixture at Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) , here on Tuesday.
The Gaurs came from behind in the second half to share the spoils with Phrangki Buam and Lesly Rebello scoring to cancel out first-half goals from Sunil Chhetri and N Siva Sakthi.
The Blues dominated the game from the start and had the majority of possession in the first half. They left no chance for the Gaurs to settle in the game. They were creating openings in the Gaur half and putting pressure on the youngsters.
The first goal came in the 24th minute from a free kick, after a foul on Rohit Kumar just outside the box. Sunil Chhetri deliciously curled one into the top right corner to give BFC a deserved lead. It was the talisman’s third goal of the tournament.
BFC continued to dominate in midfield with Bruno Ramires providing accurate balls to wingers Udanta Singh and Namgyal Bhutia. The pair were always ready to run into the open spaces left by the Goa defence.
One of those balls from Bruno found Udanta who headed it through the six-yard box for N Siva Sakthi to score his second of the tournament and double BFC’s lead.
The BFC started the second half brilliantly but the FCG showed more vigor and the desire to get back into the game. They started pressing higher up the pitch and started creating more chances. The BFC midfield and defense came under pressure and the first goal came from an error on their part.
A weak header to keeper by Rohit Kumar was poached by Buam, who rounded keeper Amrit Gope, to finish with consummate ease.
Goa had morale and began to have even more significant attacks. The second goal came in the 63rd minute from a lightning run by Vasim Inamdar, who pushed the ball forward for captain Lesley Rebello to finish between the keeper’s legs.
The Gaurs finished their Durand Cup campaign with four points while Bengaluru have seven points from three games. Bengaluru FC will face Mohammedan SC on September 2 to decide the winners of Group A.