Vineeth powers BFC

Blues score gritty 1-0 win over debutantes Aizawl

Vineeth powers BFC

CK Vineeth for long has been one of the pillars around which Bengaluru FC has flourished as a side over the past two seasons. While scoring goals has never been a problem for the Kerala striker, it his ability to impose himself on the game and see his side through the finish line is what has made him an indispensable part of the Bengaluru set-up.

And all these qualities came to the fore on a dry Sunday as he not only netted a goal for his side against gritty opponent Aizawl FC, but also helped them see off a few threats in the latter half of the game as Bengaluru FC emerged 1-0 winners in the I-League tie.

Letting himself free at the edge of the penalty area for long, Vineeth ensured that he was the first to meet a Keegan Pereira free-kick as the 27-year-old rose high to head in the only goal of the game in the 49th minute.

The win took the Ashley Westwood-coached side to second spot on the league table with 18 points, four behind reigning champions Mohun Bagan who are perched at the top.

No pushoversThey might be new to the league, but Jahar Das-coached Aizawl were definitely no pushovers as the side from the North East took the fight to the opposition right from the whistle.

Defending their goal with determination, Aizawl ensured that they held firm as the Bengaluru forward line charged down the field with persistent waves of attack, testing and probing the Aizawl defence.

Bengaluru FC had a chance as early as the eighth minute when winger Rino Anto played in a delightful cross into the box but forward Seiminlen Doungel failed to reach the ball wasting a good chance to break the deadlock.

The Kerala player continued to be Bengaluru’s bright spark through the remainder of the half.

Though it wasn’t enough to satisfy the 9000-odd spectators at the Sree Kanteerava stadium, it did set the pace for the day as Bengaluru continued with their onslaught stitching passes and trying to create an opening against an air-tight Aizwal defence.

Restricted to possession only in phases, the visitors too tested the Bengaluru custodian Amrinder Singh with a couple of efforts. 

Lalmuankima had a decent effort at goal from the edge of the penalty area, while Alfred Jaryan had the best of the lot when he sent in a measured shot five yards from goal. 

But nothing could get past the Bengaluru shot stopper as he was up to the task and saw off the danger with a number of quality saves. 

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