Bengaluru FC thrash North Korea’s April 25 SC in AFC Cup semi-final first leg
Sunil Chhetri led the charge for Bengaluru FC before Udanta Singh and Lenny Rodrigues found the target against North Korea’s April 25 SC in AFC Cup semi-final first legUpdated: Aug 23, 2017 22:57 IST
Star striker Sunil Chhetri was among the goal-getters as Bengaluru FC thrased North Korean side April 25 3-0 in first of the two-legged AFC Cup inter- zone semifinal match here today.
Chhetri led the charge with a 32nd minute strike before Udanta Singh and Lenny Rodrigues found the target in the 51st and 78th minutes to help Bengaluru register an emphatic win in the rain-hit match in front of the cheering home crowd at Sree Kanteerava Stadium.
Heavy rains lashed the stadium an hour into the game and both the teams played under reduced visibility.
Chhetri broke the deadlock in the 32nd minute by converting a penalty kick after Udanta was brought down by the North Korean goalkeeper Ri Kang inside the area.
Chhetri stepped up and sent his shot at the center, which beat Ri Kang, who dived to his right.
Bengaluru scored their second goal through Udanta as the winger sprinted from the vacant right flank into the box and sent a superb left footer into the North Korean net.
Lenny Rodrigues completed the route as he sent the ball past Kang who was blinded by the splash of water on his face.
Chhetri broke away and ran almost 50 yards to cut in and deliver the cross from the left to Lenny who made no mistake.
Chhetri missed a chance to score his second goal in the 42nd minute after Kang, who was off the line, managed to get a finger of a the Indian striker’s shot for a corner.
April 25 also had their chance in 23rd minute as Ri Hyong Jin sent an accurate freekick but An Song Il’s header hit the crossbar and the ball rebounded back into play.
They also missed an opportunity coming their way to reduce the margin in the 71st minute as Kwon Ch sent a grounded cross but An Il Bom could not connect it properly.
Soon after the half-time break, April 25 got into their act, but the smartness of the Indian goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu saved the situation. Kim Yu Song had beaten three Bengaluru men and was going for a shot from an angle into the goal in 49th minute but Sandhu denied him.
A couple of minutes back too, Gurpreet had done well to send the ball out of danger after Kim Jong Chol had flicked to An Il Bom, who sent a cross across the goal with all the defenders falling short of pace to get hold of it.
Bengaluru FC will now travel to Pyongyang on September 13 for the second leg match.