Bengaluru FC win Puttaiah Memorial Cup
I-League champions Bengaluru FC put on a splendid show, claiming the Puttaiah Memorial Cup with an 8-1 win over ASC on Saturday. A second half hat-trick from Sean Rooney, a brace from Sunil Chhetri, and goals from Udanta Singh, Rino Anto and Eugeneson Lyngdoh sealed the deal for the Blues before Ramesh scored a consolation for ASC.
In a display of attacking football, Ashley Westwood’s men took the lead with just over a minute on the clock when Chhetri’s cross found Udanta unmarked in the box. The 18-year-old rose high to nod past ASC ‘keeper Balwanth. The skipper then doubled the lead with a penalty when referee Balasubramanya pointed to the spot following Balwanth’s foul on Bengaluru midfielder Thoi Singh.
Uncomfortable after picking up a niggle, Westwood replaced the striker with Rino Anto moments later, and it didn’t take long for the substitute to get on the score-sheet. Bengaluru ‘keeper Lalthuammawia Ralte’s clearance was pounced upon by Rino who, after cutting past two defenders, launched an unstoppable shot into the roof of the net to send the crowd into raptures.
Chhetri then got his second assist of the night with a cut back from the touchline allowing Eugeneson to tap home and send Bengaluru into the break with a four goal lead.
Westwood made two further substitutions at the break with Rooney and Curtis Osano replacing Joshua Walker and John Johnson. It didn’t take long for Rooney to make an impact as a mix-up in defence allowed him to send a header past the ‘keeper five minutes into the second half.
His second of the night came in the 64th minute when, after being brought down for a free-kick, Chhetri’s pass from a training ground routine allowed him to fire home from 25 yards.
The Australian then made his claim for the match-ball with his diving header from a Beikhokhei Beingaichho cross bouncing in off the crossbar. Goalscorer turned provider when Rooney, after being brought down once again, swerved a looping cross for Chhetri to tap home.
ASC pulled one back with midfielder Ramesh sending a free-kick above the Bengaluru wall and away from the reach of a wrong-footed Ralte but it was too little too late as Bengaluru lifted the cup in front of over 1,000 fans.
“We’re very pleased to have won a tournament that’s been around for so many years. For a footballer, nothing gives more confidence than having the ball in the back of the net and hopefully this win will stand us in good stead going into the Federation Cup,” said Westwood after the game.
Source : Bengaluru FC