AFC CUP 2017-Inter-zone

18.10.2017 : BENGALURU FC 2-2 FC ISTIKLOL (FT.)
FCI : Nuruddin Davronov 2'(pen), 56'
BFC : Rahul Bheke 25', SUNIL CHHETRI 64 PEN)
BFC: Gurpreet, Rahul, Juanan, Lenny, Dimas, Khabra, Sunil, Udanta, Nishu, Daniel, Erik.
FCI: Stosic, Asrorov, Mawutor, Davronov, Aliev, Barkov, Fatkhulloev, Nazarov, Dzhalilov M, Dzhalilov R, Stetsenko

FT : Istiklol enter the AFC Cup final with a 2-3 aggregate win.
80': BFC 2-2 FCI
45': 2 minute added time.
45': 2 minute added time.
42': RED CARD - BFC : Khabra for 2nd Yellow. Bfc down to 10 men.
35': BFC 1-1 FCI
25': GOOOOAALLLLLLLLLLLLLL 1-1. Corner of Udanta and header of Rahul Bheke.
10': Sunil Chhetri got a chance but missed the target.
3': GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLL Davronov scored from Penalty.
1': Match starts.
0': Bengaluru FC lost their first leg match 1-0 in away.
0': Winner of this match will move to AFC Cup 2017 final, to face Al-Jawiya Al-Riyadhi(Air Force AC) of Iraq on 4th Nov, 2017.


BENGALURU FC TO FACE FC Istiklol in AFC CUP 2017-Inter-zone FINAL (2nd Leg)

17.10.2017: BFC PRRESS RELEASE: In what has the potential to be a comeback story for the ages, Bengaluru FC will face off against Tajikistan’s FC Istiklol as both sides go to battle for a place in the 2017 AFC Cup final at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru, on Wednesday.


Having gone down 1-0 in Dushanbe, Albert Roca’s side will need to beat the Tajik champions by a two-goal margin if they are to get a shot at revenge with last year’s winners Air Force Club (Iraq) who have booked their place in the final for a second year running. Moreover, with both teams finishing runners-up in the last two editions of the competition, either team will be motivated with the prospect of playing the final in front of their home support this time around.

Coming into the game, visitors Istiklol who arrived in the city on Monday, have been boosted by the return of Ghanaian midfielder David Mawutor and Tajik midfielder Juraboev Amirbek while Ukraine defender Artem Baranavskyi continues to serve a suspension.

Banking on their counter-attacking skills, the Tajik side managed to create a host of chances in the first leg, but were denied on most occasions by a resolute defensive performance at the back by the Blues, who dominated possession throughout the game. However, having been denied a penalty in the closing stages of the game, Bengaluru FC will be hoping to move on and get the desired result at the Fortress.

Building up to the game, the Blues utilized their three-week break between the ties training in the city before a short camp at the BFC Residential Academy in Bellary last week. Having completed a few sessions at the Kanteerava, and the return of national team players, the hosts are geared up for one of the biggest games of the season. With no suspensions or injuries to worry about, the Blues will have a full-strength squad at their disposal as they aim to turn around the tie.

Speaking on the eve of the game, Head Coach Albert Roca said, “We all know the permutations and combinations now and it's simple for us. We need to win by two goals, and so we need to get off to a good start. It won't be easy against Istiklol who will be hard to break down, but there’s no turning back and we will go all out to get the result.”

With the team back in familiar conditions, and a natural turf to play on, Roca wants his team to make most of the home advantage. For the record, the Blues haven’t lost at the Fortress in the AFC Cup this season logging four successive wins, scoring eight goals and conceding just one. With fans playing an important role during this campaign, the Coach didn’t shy away from highlighting their role as the team’s 12th man.

“We have a good record at home this season, and it gives us a boost ahead of the game. The fans have been great so far, and I know that the atmosphere they'll create will give our players that extra motivation during the game. They have always been there behind us and we want to give them another reason to cheer,” said Roca as he urged fans to support in numbers.

Should the game finish 1-0 to the Blues at the end of regulation time, extra-time will be played followed by penalty kicks. The game kicks off under floodlights at 7 PM IST and will be streamed live on AFC’s Facebook channel.


AFC CUP 2017-Inter-zone FINAL (1st Leg)

27.09.2017: BENGALURU FC 0-1 Istiklol Dushanbe - FT
IST : Barkov 26'

BFC : Gurpreet, Rahul, Juan, Collin, Nishu, Paartalu, Lenny, Delgado, Toni, Sunil, Udanta.

IST : Stosic, Asrorov, Davronov, Aliev, Barkov, Fatkhulloev, Nazarov, Dhalilov, Ehson, Stetsenko, Dzhalilov

Blues Denied Crucial Penalty; Tajik Side Claim 1-0 First Leg Win

27.09.2017: BFC PRESS RELEASE : Bengaluru FC fought hard, but were done in by dubious decisions at the end, as they went down 0-1 to a resolute FC Istiklol side in the first leg of the 2017 AFC Cup Inter-zone final at the Hisor Central Stadium, in Dushanbe, on Wednesday.

A first half goal from Dmitri Barkov (27th minute) puts Istiklol in the driving seat with Bengaluru FC having all to play for in the second leg at home, to be played on October 18. Collin Abranches started ahead of Harmanjot Khabra at right-back in the only change that Albert Roca rung in from the side that held 4.25 SC to a draw away in DPR Korea.

The Blues got things off to an impressive start, defending with calm and pegging Istiklol back with swift counter attacks. But the home side made the most of a lapse in focus from Bengaluru when Dmitri Barkov met Fathuloev Fathullo’s cross from the right with a fantastic diving header to make it 1-0 in the 27th minute.

Sunil Chhetri soon had a chance to pull one back after being set up by Lenny Rodrigues but the skipper dragged his shot wide. At the other end, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu denied Ehsoni Panshanbe with a fantastic save to keep Bengaluru in the game at half time.

The second half saw Bengaluru FC keep more possession of the ball while trying to penetrate through the Istiklol defense. The hosts meanwhile, opted to push up on swift counter attacks, and one such move earned them a freekick in a decent area just outside the box on the right in the 52nd minute. However, once again it was Gurpreet who pulled off another diving save to keep the score at 1-0.

A little over the hour mark, Roca threw in Khabra for Abranches and Daniel Lalhlimpuia for Toni Dovale as Bengaluru began putting Istiklol under pressure. Udanta Singh was throwing his pace at the defence but the hosts managed to stuff out any chance of a final ball.

The final quarter of the game saw some end-to-end action with both sides going all-out attack. Chhetri was once again the target man inside the box, but the skipper lacked the finishing touch inside the box.

With the Blues putting their bodies on the line in the final few minutes of the game, a quick counter attack right at the death almost changed the game. Udanta set on a solo and sprinted past a host of defenders down the left flank. His powerful drive was saved by the keeper and the rebound fell for Chhetri whose shot was clearly handled inside the box by a defender.

However, the referee waived play-on despite multiple protests by the Blues in the game’s most decisive moment with the final whistle blowing seconds later. Speaking at the end of the game, Blues’ skipper Sunil Chhetri said, “We played very well in the second half and I think we deserved a goal. But it’s only one goal and we have all to play for in the second leg at home.”



BENGALURU FC DREW 3-0 IN AWAY MATCH OF Inter-Zone play-off Semi-Finals 2017 AND through to the Inter-zonal final of the 2017

13.09.2017: April 4.25 SC 0-0 Bengaluru FC (90'+4')
4.25: Tae, Jin, Chung, Chol,Min, Song, Yu, Hyong, Myong, Kuk, Song-IL

BFC: BFC: Gurpreet, Rahul, Juanan, Lenny, Dimas, Khabra, Sunil, Udanta, Nishu, Erik, Dovale

Bengaluru FC kept their calm to hold on to a three-goal lead from the first leg to seal an aggregate win (3-0) after a goalless draw against 4.25 SC, at the May Day Stadium, in Pyongyang, on Wednesday. The result secures a place for the Blues in the Inter-zone final of the 2017 AFC Cup, where they are set to face Tajik side FC Istiklol in a two-legged affair.

Into the final quarter of the game, 4.25 had the best chance to break the deadlock as Rahul Bheke brought down Bom inside the box in the 77th minute, prompting referee Wang Di to point to the spot. However, Gurpreet dived to his right denying midfielder Ri Hyong Jin's effort from 12 yards.

90'+4: MATCH END. 0-0 . bEENGALURU through to the Inter-zonal final of the 2017 AS THEY WON 3-0 IN HOME.
74': Gurpreet saved Penalty kick of april4.25.
HT :: 0-0
0': Bengaluru FC have entire squad with no suspensions or injuries. However, Dimas Delgado, Lenny Rodrigues and Harmanjot Khabra who all picked up bookings during the first leg will have to be careful as another booking will find them suspended from the Inter-zonal final should the Blues make it through.
0': This is the second leg of the 2017 AFC Cup Inter-Zonal semifinal at the May Day Stadium in Pyongyang
0':Bengaluru FC won their first leg against North Korean side in 3-0.


BENGALURU FC WIN 3-0 IN HOME MATCH OF Inter-Zone play-off Semi-Finals 2017 23.08.2017 : BENGALURU FC 3-0 4.25 FC (FT)
BFC : Sunil Chhetri (32' Pen), Udanta Singh (51'), Lenny Rodrigues 77'
BFC : Gurpreet, Rahul, Juan, Khabra, Nishu, Paartalu, Lenney, Delgado, Toni, Sunil, Udanta.
FULL TIME Bengaluru FC beat 4.25 FC in the first leg of AFC Cup Inter-Zone Semi-final.
78': GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAALLL 3-0. Sunil cross and finish by Lenny..
75': 2-0 leading by BFC.
51': GOOAAALL 2-0 for BFC, Udanta Singh Scored.
46': 2nd half starts.
34': GOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAALLL 1-0. Sunil scored from penalty.

23.08.2017 - BFC PRESS RELEASE : Bengaluru FC showed absolutely no signs of rust or lack of time to prepare as Albert Roca’s side turned on the style to beat North Korean side 4.25 SC 3-0 and take a big step towards the Inter-zone final on a rain-soaked night at the Kanteerava Stadium, in Bengaluru, on Wednesday.

Goals on either side of the break by skipper Sunil Chhetri (32nd minute, Penalty) and Udanta Singh (51st) put the Blues 2-0 up before Lenny Rodrigues joined the party with a goal in the 77th minute to give the Blues a massive advantage ahead of the away leg on September 13 in Pyongyang.

Head Coach Albert Roca handed debuts to five new signings with Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Rahul Bheke, Dimas Delgado, Erik Paartalu and Antonio Dovale all featuring in the starting XI.

The Blues went on attack mode right from the word go as Udanta Singh intercepted a pass in the rival half and attempted a shot in the first minute itself which was saved by the 4.25 SC custodian. Thereafter, visitors 4.25 SC had a spell of possession where they tried to make inroads into the Blues’ box, only to be thwarted by Roca’s boys.

Having had half-chances for most part of the first half, an intelligent move around the half-hour mark opened up the rival defence and handed Bengaluru their first goal. Juanan with a long diagonal ball found Harmanjot Khabra on the flank who headed it into box for Udanta whose pace was too much for the rival keeper to handle as he brought the youngster down. Chhetri then coolly chipped in the resultant penalty kick for his third goal of the competition to hand the Blues a 1-0 lead.

Bengaluru continued to push up and almost doubled their lead three minutes from the break. Chhetri timed his run to perfection to beat the offside trap on a lobbed pass inside the box. The skipper controlled the ball and tried to chip an onrushing keeper who got a deft touch to divert it for a corner. The half ended with Bengaluru firmly in charge and a goal up.

The Blues got off to the perfect start in the second half doubling their lead six minutes in. Udanta, once again, intelligently intercepted a pass on the right before running solo and making no mistake to slot home past Ri Kang in the rival goal.

The visitors created a few chances of their own, but the Blues’ backline led by ’keeper Gurpreet held firm under the torrential downpour. Midway through the half, Lenny Rodrigues almost pulled off a blinder. His pile driver from 30-yards out was headed for the roof of the goal, only for the keeper to palm it over.

With incessant rain pouring down, both sides were finding it difficult to control the game; however, the Blues adjusted to the water-logged pitch much better which translated into another goal. A quick release by Dovale down the left saw Chhetri run clear and float in a delightful cross to Lenny, who timed his run well at the far post to slide the ball home and seal the game.

Substitute Daniel Lalhlimpuia had a chance late on to get his name on the scoresheet, but he somehow scuffed his shot wide from inside the box as the game ended 3-0.