Bengaluru start with scrappy win

Sporting Clube de Goa staged a late surge but it was Bengaluru FC who had the last laugh in a nerve-wrecking Federation Cup encounter which ended 5-3 at the MDSC Stadium here on Wednesday.

Late goals from Beevan Mello and Victorino Fernandes gave Bengaluru some needless headache after Boima Karpeh had pulled one back for Sporting who were down by four goals till the 73rd minute.

But substitute Robin Singh netted the fifth and final goal of the match in the last minute of added time to ensure a miraculous Sporting comeback was not on the cards.

Robin scored in the second half before Sporting’s mini-comeback to add to Bengaluru FC’s three goal cushion in the first session. Beikhokhei scored twice and Sunil Chhetri netted the other in the first half for the I-League leaders. Boima, who scored one and set up the other two for Sporting, missed a penalty in the 58th minute.

Earlier, John Meyongar floated the ball into the area with Sean Rooney chasing it. Sporting goalkeeper Ravi Kumar fluffed with the ball falling nicely for Beikhokhei who slammed the ball into the back of the net.

The I-League leaders doubled their tally in the 30th minute when India captain Chhetri scored his 10th goal in all club competitions this season. Meyongar found Rino Anto on the right who controlled the ball well to tee up Chhetri, who headed home with minimal fuss.

Beikhokhei notched up his second seven minutes later to underline BFC’s domination in the first half. Chhetri turned provider, twisting and turning his marker to set up Beikhobei who just had to tap in from close range.

Results: At Manjeri: Bengaluru FC: 5 (Beikhokhei 5th, 40th, Sunil Chhetri 33rd, Robin Singh 66th, 90+3) bt Sporting Clube de Goa: 3 (Boima Karpeh 74th, Beevan Mello 89th, Victorino 90+1). At Kochi: Shillong Lajong: 4 (Seikhohao Tuboi 17th, Redeem Tlang 37th, Taisuke Matsugae 46th, Glen Cornell 63rd) bt Salgaocar: 0.

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