Blue Colts Suffer First Loss In Karnataka-Andhra Zone Of U18 Youth League
Mangalore: Bengaluru FC suffered their first defeat of the campaign, going down 2-1 to FC Mangalore in a Round Six encounter of the U18 Youth League at the Yenepoya University Ground in Mangalore, on Tuesday.
A late fightback from Bengaluru sparked by substitute Manbhakupar Iawphniaw’s (84’) goal fell short as a goal in each half from FC Mangalore striker Murshid KP (28’, 64’) handed the hosts all three points. Despite dropping points, the Blue Colts remain in pole position in Karnataka-Andhra zone with 15 points from six games.
While the Blues created close chances early on, it was the hosts that took the lead in the 28th minute. BFC custodian Tamal Naskar, who produced two good saves to deny FC Mangalore attacker Vishnu TM, was finally beaten when the latter’s partner in attack, Murshid KP found the top-corner from the edge of the box after being afforded too much space by the Bengaluru defense.
The second half saw Bengaluru come out with intent and began pushing forward, but lack of clear chances didn’t help the visitors. While the Blue Colts pushed ahead in search of the equalizer, once again it was a defensive lapse at the back that proved costly. Substitute winger Ashik AK managed to run free on the right before sending in a cross towards an unmarked Murshid in the box who tapped home with ease to complete his brace in the 64th minute.
With the hosts protecting a two-goal cushion, Bengaluru finally managed to break their defense down and pull one goal back. Substitute Manbhakupar Iawphniaw, on for Ronik Singh, controlled a long freekick by Robin Yadav from the half-line before slotting it past the goalkeeper to make it 2-1 in the 84th minute.
With just six minutes left to play, the Blue Colts threw bodies up front, and almost got an equaliser in the first minute of injury time. Defender Mohammed Rafi found striker Akashdeep Singh with a long throw in from the left but the latter’s header on goal was saved acrobatically by ’keeper Manoj Gowda.
In the final minute of injury time, Arun Kumar had another chance to pull the Blue Colts level but the midfielder failed to convert in a one-on-one situation after controlling a long ball from BFC custodian Naskar as the youngsters fell to their first defeat.
Bengaluru FC now host Ananthapur Sports Academy in Vijayanagar on December 3.