Kerala Blasters registered their third win in the 7th season of Hero Indian Super League with a 2-1 win against Bengaluru FC.
Puitea and Rahul KP scored in the second half for the Yellow Brigade after a brilliant opener from the Blues forward Cleiton Silva.
Kerala have now strengthened their chances of reaching the top four by winning this match and are currently 9th. Whereas, their southern rivals are winless in six consecutive matches struggling at 7th place.
Kerala Blasters 2-1 Bengaluru FC : Team News
Kibu Vicuna made three changes in his starting 11 after the match against East Bengal. Kerala fielded a familiar 4-4-1-1 formation.
However, Bengaluru interim coach Naushad Moosa made five changes to the lineup and fielded a traditional 4-3-3 formation. Fran Gonzalez was included in the match against his former coach.
Kerala Blasters 2-1 Bengaluru FC Analysis:
Kerala Blasters were looking the more confident side throughout the match as they looked dangerous while attacking keeping the possession.
However, Brazilian forward Cleiton Silva scored a brilliant half-volley just inside 23 minutes.
The first half ended in a disappointing performance by Blasters. To add more despair, Jordan Murray suffered an injury and was forced to be substituted just a minute after second half.
However, the equalizer came after a shot from Gary Hooper and BFC Goalkeeper, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu clearing it. Hooper cunningly passed the ball to super sub Lalthathanga Khawlhring (Puitea) who finished it in style.
The club from Karnataka looked as if they won the game after an overhead kick by Erik Paartalu. However, flying goalkeeper Albino Gomes had a brilliant save!
Bengaluru made a mistake by bringing all their defenders to attack as Gary Hooper launched a quick counter and passed it to Rahul KP. However, the 20-year-old forward made no mistake and snatches home a goal in the dying minutes of the game! What a comeback by the team in Yellow!
Gary Hooper (8.5/10) – The most expensive player of ISL is finally looking like the club didn’t make any mistake buying him. Bagging two crucial assists for the team, the 32-year-old forward was simply at his best form. He deserves to be the Man of the Match for this fixture.
Jeakson Singh (8/10) – Eyebrows were raised when Jeakson was included as a centre-back. However, the youngster put an all round performance steady and organized in the defence.
Juanan (6/10) – He was not up to the standards and allowed the opponents to score the equalizer. He could have cleared the ball however.
Kerala Blasters achieve their second ever win against Bengaluru FC and would be keen on making to the top four. The Tuskers next face ISL hosts FC Goa on 23rd January evening. Whereas the Blues from Karnataka would be looking to win as they play Odisha on 24th January.
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