Rooney powers BFC

Home side thumps Dempo 3-1 to regain top position

Rooney powers BFC

A brace from Sean Rooney either side of half-time powered hosts Bengaluru FC to a 3-1 win over Dempo in a round six encounter of the I-League here at the Bangalore Football Stadium on Wednesday.

Siam Hangel got the other goal for the hosts and Clifford Miranda struck what ultimately proved to be a consolation for the former champions.

The win lifted BFC back to the top of the I-League table with 13 points from five games -- three ahead of Salgaocar, who lost their match away at Mohun Bagan 2-1 to remain in second place.

BFC raced to a two-goal lead within the first 11 minutes to calm any nerves, if any, of facing the five-time champions before sealing their domination just past the hour mark.

Both sides started with a 4-2-3-1 formation but it was BFC who began on a sharper note.
Performing in front of India coach Wim Koevermans who was in attendance to see the majority of his wards before announcing the squad for the two friendlies in November, midfielder Siam Hangel set the ball rolling for the hosts with a powerful strike from the edge of the area in the sixth minute after a weak clearance following a throw-in fell.
Even before Dempo could recover from that early setback, they were deeper in the mire in the 11th minute.

A long diagonal from centre-back John Johnson towards Rooney was overcooked but Chhetri, coming in from the left-flank anticipating a defensive mix-up, followed on before shooting straight at the goalkeeper Subhasish Chowdhury, whose parry inadvertently set-up Rooney and he din’t need a second invitation to place it past him into the bottom corner. India international Jeje Lalpekhlua, who started on the right wing but was given the licence to roam, came closest to scoring for the visitors in the first half but Johnson and fellow centre-back Curtis Osano thwarted most of them without breaking much sweat.

Beto, who started on Dempo’s left hand side, moved to central-midfield role to see more of the ball and that paid dividends as they had finally started to keep the ball better.
Chhetri, apart from playing a part in the opening goal, was largely anonymous and was the first name to enter the book in the 47th minute. BFC started playing the percentages and were rewarded handsomely for the change in tactics.

A defence-splitting pass from midfielder Darren Caldeira set Rooney through on goal and his smart finish in the 61st minute extended BFC’s grip on the game.

Dempo were crying out for some sort of inspiration and they got it through Miranda’s left-footed free-kick from near the right goalline that looped over ’keeper Pawan Kumar’s head in the 63rd minute.

Despite Dempo reducing the margin, BFC didn’t appear under pressure and ran down the clock quite comfortably for their fourth straight win of the campaign. BFC would now look to cash in on their momentum as they hit the road for their first time. They take on East Bengal on Oct 26 followed by clashes against Mumbai FC (Nov 2) and Pune FC (Nov 6).

Goans lose opportunity

Salgaocar, who began the day in first place because of a superior goal difference, squandered their opportunity against Mohun Bagan to give them their first league win of the campaign.

CS Sabeeth (51st) and Katsumi Yusa (76th) had given Bagan a two-goal lead and the Goan side could only manage a consolation through Darryl Duffy in injury time.

In the day’s late kick-off, a 19-minute brace from Cornell Glen (60th, 79th) helped Shillong Lajong to a 3-2 win away from home against Mumbai FC.

After Taisuke Matsugane (6th) had given Shillong the lead, Mumbai restoted parity through Sandjar Ahmadi (16th) before Glen’s double set Shillong on their way. Ritesh Perambra (90+1) scored a second in injury time but the visitors saw out out the danger to take home all three points.

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