Kochi: It seemed that a spot-kick from Sunil Chettri at the hour mark would be enough to settle the tie for Bengaluru FC. But a flurry of late goals made for a more exciting match which ended 3-1 in favour of the visitors at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here on Sunday. Miku netted twice in added time, while Courage Pekuson also got on the scoresheet for Kerala Blasters FC.
The win takes Bengaluru FC to third position on the table and in touching distance of league leaders Chennaiyin FC.
The Blues could have easily put more goals past the home side if not for some heroic goalkeeping by Subhasish Roy. He was called into action a number of times on either side of the break, and he kept his team in the contest. Albert Roca’s side were in complete control of the game from the start. In the 35th minute of the game, Roy was put to test by Chhetri but he did enough to palm the strikers fierce shot away. At the other end, Kerala didn’t have much going forward.
The second half began much like the first. Roy was again called into action to save another Chhetri effort in the 50th minute. But ten minutes later, a hand-ball by Sandesh Jhingan gave Bengaluru a chance to take the lead from the spot. Chettri took the responsibility and this time Roy had no answers.
The game continued with Bengaluru looking more likely to score again than a reply from Kerala who were playing in front of their home supporters. Then, later on, Miku got himself a double. The Spanish import’s first goal came after a magnificent solo run from the midfield before putting it past Roy.
Barely a minute later, he got on to a cut back from Subasish Bose, who had done well to get inside the box after nutmegging Jhingan. Miku was left with a simple task of tapping the ball home, which he did with ease.
Kerala Blasters looked down and out and their supporters started to walk out after having seen enough. But there was still time for more drama as Pekuson grabbed a consolidatory goal for the home side after making a bursting run down the middle of Bengaluru defence.