Bengaluru FC trounce Aizawl

BFC's Daniel Segovia (right) tries to score past Aizawl FC goalkeeper Lalawmpuia during their clash in the AFC Cup football tournament at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Wednesday. (DH Photo/B H Shivakumar)

A wounded Bengaluru FC were back at their dazzling best as they trounced Aizawl FC 5-0 in an AFC Cup Group E fixture here.

However, there was a damper on the mood before kick-off at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium on Wednesday as group toppers New Radiant SC extended their dominance with a 5-1 hammering of minnows Abahani Dhaka Limited earlier in the day. That meant Bengaluru will have to win away at Dhaka and Aizawl will need to take points off New Radiant if Albert Roca's men are to qualify for the knockouts.

For the modest gathering that turned up to watch what could be the last home game of the season for the Blues, there was a lot to cheer about as Sunil Chhetri (16th minute), Daniel Segovia (17th and 62nd), Udanta Singh (30th) and Daniel Lalhlimpuia (89th) found the target.

It was all one-way traffic right from the beginning as the Aizawl goal was being constantly peppered by waves of BFC attacks and it didn't take too long for the home side to go ahead.

Chhetri collected Segovia's pass in the box but the skipper's first touch took the ball away from goal. Despite there being no real threat, the visiting goalkeeper Lalawmpuia felled Chhetri and the referee was quick to point to the spot. Cool and calm as ever, the Indian captain put his side ahead.

It was a double whammy for Santosh Kashyap's Aizawl as they were two goals to the worse a minute later. Australian Erik Paartalu won the ball in the midfield and sent Segovia on his way with a delightful through ball. Having to beat just the 'keeper, the Spaniard bulged the net with a smart right-footed effort.

Sustained pressure from Chhetri and company was making it increasingly hard for Aizawl to make a contest of it and in the 30th minute, Udanta put the result beyond doubt, tapping in a neat cut-back from Chhetri.

Apart from a temporary lull, it was the same no-remorse football from BFC after the break. The inevitable fourth goal came in the 62nd with Segovia registering his brace after a headed effort into the far corner.

The Aizawl defence remained clueless and lacked any semblance of cohesion and was punished again as the clock ran down. It was Chhetri once again in the thick of things as he skipped past a couple of defenders and made his way into the box. With the ball almost beyond his reach, Chhetri made a sliding effort to set-up Lalhlimpuia and the substitute made no mistake with his finish to cap off an entertaining evening for the 1530-odd supporters.

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Bengaluru FC trounce Aizawl

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