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Pune FC U-21 storms into Bandodkar Gold Trophy Final

Pune FC U-21 storms into Bandodkar Gold Trophy Final

Sporting Clube de Goa U-21 went down fighting by 1-2 margin in extra time to Pune FC U-21 in the semis of the Bandodkar Gold Trophy Football Tournament played at Duler Stadium on Monday.

In a well contested first session the teams went into the breather locked in a 1-1 draw. Nigerian Ndidi Chukwuma (3′) put Sporting ahead, while Buanthanglun Samte (14′) equalized for Pune FC.

In the very 3rd minute of the match Pune’s Rajat Kumar was caught in act of coming with a reckless challenge on Sarineo Fernandes inside the danger zone right in front of the eyes of referee Anthony Simoes, who without any hesitation pointed to the dreaded spot.

Sporting’s Ndidi Chukwama made no mistake to score by sending the rival keeper the wrong way. Sporting had two more chances to further inflate their lead in the 8th and 10th minute of play, but Moises D’Sa and Ndidi Chukwuma failed to beat Pune goalkeeper Anuj Kumar in one to one situation.

Pune got the Sporting defense napping in the 14th minute, where their skipper Mohd. Yasir sent a delightful pass to unmarked Buanthanglun Samte who entering the penalty box sent an adroit placement to make it 1-1.

The next 15 minutes of the match was restricted to midfield action with both the teams reducing the tempo of the match. However in the 34th minute, Pune’s Mohd. Yasir sent an intelligent through pass to Omega Vanlalhruaitlvanga who was brought down by Sporting’s Franzil Negredo inside the danger zone, with this time the referee awarding a penalty in Pune’s favour. Goal scorer Buanthanglun Samte, saw his strike from the penalty spot being brilliantly saved by keeper Sherwin DaCunha to the dismay of his team mates.

Five minutes before the breather Pune FC’s Ashique Kuruniyan got hold to a pass from overlapping stopper back Rajat Kumar and drilled a low shot which was pushed for a corner by keeper Sherwin with a full stretched diving save.

Just six minutes into the second session and Sporting almost took the lead where substitute Akeraj Martins leapt high to connect Sarineo Fernandes floater at the goal with Pune’s keeper Anjuj Kumar came with a superb collection.

At the other end the Sporting keeper was equal to the task as he paired the ball over the crossbar from a close range shot by Omega Vanlalhruaitlvanga off a pass from Lalawmpuia.

In the 75th minute Sporting’s Daryl Costa collected a long pass from Quan Gomes raced forward with the ball hoodwinked defender Rajat and onrushing keeper Anuj but to everyone surprise placed the ball past the side post.

In the 87th minute Pune’s keeper Anuj Kumar came with a breath taking save to block Daryl Costa header from inside the six-yard box off a Akeraj Martins cross.

It was the Sporting keeper at the other end in the 89th minute, who managed to fist the ball for a corner off a hot blooded shot from Ashique Kuruniyan just inside the penalty box.

With the regulation time ending in a 1-1 draw, twenty minutes of additional time was played. In the 105 minute of extra time Pune’s skipper Mohd. Yasir drilled a scorching 25-yard free kick which crashed to the top corner of the goal to give his side a 2-1 lead.

In the closing stages of the match Pune were awarded another penalty kick, after Sporting’s Shawn Noronha brought down Omega, who however shot out from the penalty spot.

Pune’s Omega Vanlalhruaitlvanga received the Man of the Match cash prize of Rs.5,000/- from the hands of Santosh Bandodkar (GFA Executive Committee Member).

The Final of one of Goa’s most prestigious and historic football tournaments is set to be held tomorrow evening where Pune FC U-21 will taking on Dempo SC U-21 at the Duler Stadium in Mapusa at 19.00 IST.

(Report & Photo courtesy Goa Football Association)