South United edge CIL

Football: United to face Bengaluru FC in semis on Wednesday

South United edge CIL

A penalty shootout was called for as South United defeated CIL in a closely fought quarterfinal clash of the Puttaiah Memorial Cup at the Bangalore Football Stadium here on Monday.

With the scores tied at 1-1 after 90 minutes of intense action, the United boys held their nerves to convert all the five spot kicks, while Gopal Krishna’s missed shot for CIL was enough to hand United a passage into Wednesday’s semifinals.

They will face Bengaluru FC for a place in the summit clash. The other semifinal, on Tuesday, will see Students Union face Army Service Corps (ASC).

South United went ahead as early as in the fourth minute. A defensive lapse provided Subash with a clear shot at the goal and the United front man made no mistake as he calmly slotted in the opener. Not deterred by the early goal, CIL regrouped quickly and came close to drawing parity minutes later when a Raju pass set up R C Prakash with just goalkeeper Kabir beat. Though the veteran did well to beat the goalkeeper, the ball hit the upright and rolled away to safety leaving the CIL players to curse their luck.

South United could have doubled their lead in the 26th minute when a counterattack left Subash with just the Jayanth Kumar to beat. This time, it was the United striker who had his hands on his head as his strike hit the left post and bounced back to safety for the defenders to clear away.

The second half saw CIL come out with more determination and the team came close time and again. Prakash finally equalised in the 80th minute, heading home a Pradeep cross from the right to push the game into a penalty shootout.

The shootout saw Tony, Mani, John Peter, Santosh and Dinesh score for South United, while Pradeep, Prakash, Vijay and Stephen Raj Kiran found the back of the net for CIL. Krishan being the only player to miss the spot kick as CIL was knocked out.

Earlier in the day, goals from Nabeel (60th minute, 78th minute) and an own-goal by Avinas from 48th minute helped AGORC drub Bangalore Independents  3-1 to move into the quarterfinals of the Prasannakumar Memorial Cup. Karthick (71st minute) scored the only consolation for the Independents.

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