Blue Colts top Bengaluru division in RF Development League 

Lyngdoh Strike Helps Blue Colts To 1-1 Draw Against Blasters; Qualify For Championship Round and PL NextGen Cup 

Bengaluru: Bengaluru FC’s Reserves played out an entertaining 1-1 draw against Kerala Blasters, at the Bangalore Football Stadium, in Bengaluru, on Monday, to finish their National Group Stage round as table-toppers in the Bengaluru division, in the RF Development League. As a result, the Blue Colts became the fourth and final team to join Sudeva Delhi, ATK Mohun Bagan and RF Young Champs in the National Championship round, set to take place in Mumbai.

With a spot in the National Championship round at stake, both teams went hard in their quest for a win, with tackles flying in from the get go. Goalkeepers at either end were kept busy and the aggressive nature of the game saw yellow cards being brandished to midfielders Shighil NS and Vibin Mohanan in the opening stages. 

Damaitphang Lyngdoh proved to be an influential presence for Ambapardiwala’s side, pulling the strings from midfield, and was at hand to put the Blue Colts in the lead. Running at the Blasters’ backline, Monirul Molla slid a pass through for Lyngdoh, who ended his timely run by rounding ’keeper Muhammed Jaseen before slotting home.

The Blasters pulled one back just before the hour mark when Muhammad Ajsal tapped home a low cross from the right by Roshan Gigi. The home side created plenty more efforts on goal, but were kept at bay by the towering presence of Bengaluru ’keeper Sharon Padattil, who made some terrific saves to keep the scores level. 

Bengaluru very nearly got back into the lead ten minutes from time, when a fumbled clearance by Blasters’ goalkeeper Jaseen allowed Ashik Adhikari to find Akashdeep in space to shoot, but the forward’s attempt was cleared at the goalline by Tejas Krishna. 

The result means the Blue Colts will now await their semifinal opponents in the National Championship round, set to begin on Thursday, and have also qualified for the PL Next Gen Cup in successive seasons.

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