Bengaluru FC drew a second successive game in the Indian Super League as a late penalty from FC Goa striker Ferran Corominas (90+3) saw the Blues finish 1-1 against the Gaurs in an enticing clash at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, in Margao, Goa, on Monday. Udanta Singh (62’) scored what would be Bengaluru’s first goal of the campaign just past the hour mark, but the late spot-kick would see it end all square in Goa.
Cuadrat rolled out an unchanged eleven from the side that started against NorthEast United at the Kanteerava last week, as Spanish defender Albert Serran recovered from injury to make the squad. Sergio Lobera, meanwhile, rang in the one change. Moroccan midfielder, Ahmed Jahouh, who sat out of the 3-0 win over Chennaiyin with a suspension, started in the middle ahead of winger Jackichand Singh.
While Bengaluru were their fluent selves, moving the ball around at will and with ease, Goa were uncharacteristically cautious in the way they approached the first half. The Blues weren’t allowing the hosts much time on the ball, forcing them to sit back and look to catch Cuadrat’s men on the counter with long punts directed at Len Doungel on the right.
Goalless at half time, Bengaluru used the walk back to the dressing room to rue their inability to make a chunk of set-pieces count. They did get close with a couple of routines, but nothing clear enough to be deemed a chance.
Knowing it would need more creativity in attack if Bengaluru were to break Goa down, Cuadrat’s firs change on the night saw Serran replace Rahul Bheke at the heart of the Blues’ defence.
For all their efforts to pass their way through a sea of orange shirts, Bengaluru’s opener came from a punt, a flick and a calm finish in the 62nd minute. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu’s long hit from just outside his box, saw Manu Onwu flick Udanta on. The winger lifted the ball over Mourtada Fall, taking the Senegalese and Mandar Rao Dessai out of the equation before calmly with his left past Mohammad Nawaz in goal to make it 1-0 in front of the travelling support.
Minutes later Udanta’s pass that would leave Chhetri with just Nawaz to beat was cut out by a last-ditch intervention from Seriton Fernandes, as Bengaluru began sensing a second. Looking for a way back into the game, Lobera replaced defensive midfielder Lenny Rodrigues with Jackichand with twenty minutes to play for.
With time running out, FC Goa pushed men forward and were handed a lifeline when, after failing to clear, Ashique Kuruniyan brought down Corominas inside the area, prompting referee Crystal John to point to the spot. Corominas made no mistake from 12 yards out, sending Gurpreet the wrong way to make it 1-1 and rescue a point for Lobera’s men.
Bengaluru travel to Jamshedpur, where a clash against Antonio Iriondo’s Jamshedpur FC awaits them on November 3rd.