Bengaluru FC turned in its most clinical performance of the season yet to outclass Mumbai City FC 3-0 at the Fatorda Stadium on Monday.
Marco Pezzaiuoli’s men effectively killed the game in the first half, as Prince Ibara scored twice after Danish Farooq gave an early lead. They were complemented by a splendid individual performance by 22-year-old Roshan Naorem, whose whip and curl created both of Ibara’s goals.
It was only BFC’s third victory of the season and it lifted the side to joint-seventh in the table with 13 points from 11 matches. For Des Buckingham’s Mumbai, the woes continued as it slipped to its third defeat in five matches. It is still second in the table but has lost all the momentum it had gathered early on in the campaign.
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On the day, it was Mumbai, which threatened first, with Cassio Gabriel having a near-post header denied by Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. But BFC soon established a stranglehold, the first sign of which came in the eighth minute when Farooq, handed his first start in three games, fired a crisp left-footed shot into the left corner.
Mourtada Fall had robbed Cleiton Silva on the edge of the area only for the ball to fall neatly into the path of Farooq, who made no mistake despite being off-balance.
In the 23rd minute, Ibara doubled the advantage, heading home a fine cross from Roshan on the right. The goal was possible after D. Vignesh failed to properly receive the ball inside the box before it fell to Roshan and Fall, as towering as Ibara, misjudged his jump to let the ball through to the striker.
What followed was a passage of play where Mumbai couldn’t get the ball out of its half. BFC attacked in waves, but the net didn’t bulge largely due to some rank profligacy. One of those was from Silva, who struck a fine cut-back from Ibara straight at Mohamad Rakip from five yards out.
But deep into first-half injury time, the Roshan-Ibara combo clicked again, with the latter coming up with another clean header off a corner.
Down 0-3, Buckingham threw in Igor Angulo and Raynier Fernandes. During a ten-minute period after the hour mark, Gabriel came close twice, sending a shot soaring over from a promising position before forcing Gurpreet into a diving save. Lalengmawia Apuia saw a shot bounce off the post.
The game however settled down thereafter, with BFC seeing out the remaining minutes to stretch its unbeaten run to five matches.
The result: Mumbai City FC 0 lost to Bengaluru FC 3 (Farooq 8, Ibara 23, 45).