Rangdajied United 1 (Lamine Tamba – 80th)
Bengaluru FC 1 (Thoi Singh – 2nd)
By Debayan Mukherjee,
AIFF Media Team,
MANJERI: A spirited Rangdajied United FC kept high-flying Bengaluru FC at bay in an entertaining Group B 1-1 draw here at the MDSC Stadium in Manjeri Saturday (January 18, 2014).
Rangdajied United's Lamine Tamba cancelled out Thoi Singh’s opener to ensure honours were shared.
The Group is now wide open with all four teams staking a claim at the only semifinal berth. After this game, Bengaluru are top of the group standings with four points from two matches while Rangdajied are third mustering two points from the same number of matches.
Now Bengaluru FC need to win against East Bengal -- who also have an outside chance despite being at the foot of the table -- to steer clear of all permutations and combinations. A draw would leave their fate hanging in the balance as Sporting Clube de Goa will then have to avoid victory at any cost against Rangdajied United who will also fancy their chances despite fashioning a win so far.
The Shillong based club can make the grade if Bengaluru lose to East Bengal and of course they triumph against Oscar Bruzon's Sporting.
Coming back to the match, it was barely two minutes when Thoi Singh ran down the middle of the pitch after latching onto Siam Hingal’s ball to fire home from close.
But Rangdajied United equalized ten minutes from time. Lamine Tamba broke free off his marker to head home a freekick from the right.
It was Rangdajied United who looked the likelier of the two to score in the first half after they had conceded two minutes into the tie. Rangdajied’s Kim Song Yong shone for Santosh Kashyap’s wards and had two good chances which were ably thwarted by Keegan Pereira and goalkeeper Pawan Kumar respectively.
First it was Keegan who warded off Yong with a strong tackle as the latter ran into him. Pawan followed it up with a punch-out for a corner after the DPR Korean let unleashed a powerful right-footer from just outside the box.
There was no goalmouth action after the break. While Bengaluru FC looked keen to keep possession, Rangdajied United tried to catch them on the counter.
Things changed in the last ten minutes of the match after Rangdajied United got the much needed equaliser.
Posted on : Saturday January 18, 2014