Mumbai: Home boy here for last two seasons, Sunil Chhetri made a telling comeback to Mumbai in different colours. The talismanic Indian skipper scored a brace to help Bengaluru FC regain top position with a 3-1 win over Mumbai City FC in their Indian Super League match at Mumbai Football Arena here on Thursday.
Bengaluru FC now have a one-point lead over second-placed Chennayin FC with 21 points from 11 games. Mumbai City remain stranded on 14 points after a second consecutive home loss.
Dimas Morgado’s foul on Mumbai City’s attacking midfielder Thiago Santos flared up the emotions in the second minute to set the tone for the match. BFC controlled the game initially but it was hosts who had first chance in the eighth minute but Balwant Singh came up with a disappointing finish.
Miku’s strike from a narrow-angle was well kept away by a diving Amrinder Singh in the 16th minute.
Balwant squandered another chance as his close-range header failed to beat towering goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu in the 35th minute. Moves and counter moves followed up and the intensity increased. Balwant earned a yellow card but didn’t learn as minutes later he pushed Chhetri’s from behind, inside the box to concede a penalty in the 43rd minute. It left defender Mehrajuddin Wadoo miffed as he had Chhetri covered. Chettri calmly finished to put his side 1-0 ahead before the break.
The last seven minutes of the first half saw four bookings, three of them to the home side.
Just four minutes into the second half, Miku missed a sitter. But Bengaluru FC soon strengthened their lead when Udanta worked magic again from the right again to release a low cross for Chhetri who again found back of the net in the 52nd minute. Miku was brought down at the edge of the box by defender Gerson Vieira and he found the opening between the wall to give Amrinder no chance in the 63rd minute. Substitute Costa gave home fans some thrill with a goal between the legs of Sandhu.