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ISL-10 | Kerala Blasters begins with a bang to brush away bitter memories

Kerala Blasters’ Daisuke Sakai and Bengaluru FC’s Jessel Carneiro tussle for possession during the Indian Super League (ISL) football match at the Nehru Stadium in Kochi on Thursday, September 21, 2023.

Kerala Blasters’ Daisuke Sakai and Bengaluru FC’s Jessel Carneiro tussle for possession during the Indian Super League (ISL) football match at the Nehru Stadium in Kochi on Thursday, September 21, 2023.
| Photo Credit: H. VIBHU

It all went horribly wrong for Bengaluru FC in the Indian Super League opener against Kerala Blasters here on Thursday. Two goals, which came when the visitor appeared a bit distracted, saw the Blasters pull off a 2-1 victory and erase the bitter memories of the ISL walkout against the same side last season.

The ISL season-10’s opening goal was an own goal by Bengaluru’s Keziah Veendorp and it came minutes after the break while Adrian Luna, who had a hand in the team’s opening goal, scored with a smart move in the 69th minute to double the lead as the packed stadium erupted in joy.

The game was played under a steady drizzle and after a dull opening half, it came alive in the second session. Shortly after the break, Blasters’ forward Kwame Peprah’s shot from outside the box was palmed over by Gurpreet Singh. And the Blasters took the lead with the following corner. Bengaluru’s Dutch midfielder Veendorf tried to awkwardly shake off a Luna cross but only managed to put it in after a goalmouth melee in the 52nd minute.

Luna’s goal came after a wily move shortly after the Bengaluru goalkeeper Gurpreet Sandhu kicked away an effort from Peprah. A Bengaluru player sent a back pass to the goalkeeper and Luna, sensing an opportunity there, charged in, dribbled the ball away from the goalkeeper’s legs and neatly sent it in.

Gurpreet appeared desperate, he shook his hands almost telling his teammate that he couldn’t hear anything in the din.

Bengaluru’s consolation goal, from substitute Curtis Main, came towards the end of the match and the team came up with a few attempts after that but the Blasters defence and goalkeeper Sachin Suresh stayed steady.

The result: Kerala Blasters (Keziah Veendorp 52-OG, Adrian Luna 69) bt Bengaluru FC 1 (Curtis Main 89).

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