FC Bengaluru United marked a welcome return to their winning ways in the I-League 2 with an emphatic 3-0 win over Sudeva Delhi FC at the Dravid & Padukone Center of Excellence. The Bengaluru team started aggressively and kept the tempo going throughout the game. Their efforts were rewarded by three smart goals – Ashley (10’) kickstarting things early into the game, Pulamte (26’) consolidating the lead and Naocha (48’) scoring early into the second half – to seal a well-deserved 3-0 win.
Under sunny skies, the home team started with positive intent, something that was missing in their last two winless encounters. Though Sudeva FC looked to control possession, FC Bengaluru United were on point on the counter, looking to make inroads early. The much-needed breakthrough came in the 10th minute – a beautiful through ball from Ribhav neatly dissected the opposition's defence. The ball took a deflection off the defender's foot, but Ashley was up to the challenge. With a neat 1-2 movement, he got the ball into the net to get FCBU on the scoreboard.
The goal galvanized the Bangalore boys as they looked to press home the advantage with some attacking play. In the 26th minute, a long throw-in from Faiz was neatly flicked by Justin. The Sudeva defence was unable to clear the ball, giving Pulamte a golden opportunity to hone the ball into the goal with his left foot and get FCBU up 2-0.
FCBU struck early in the second half with a screamer of a goal from Naocha, who came on as a substitute in halftime. Controlling the ball from the midfield, he unleashed a thunderbolt of a shot from 25 yards out. Flat, fast and furious, it rocketed into the bottom left corner to get FCBU 3-0 up. In the 85th minute, another screamer, this time from Mapuia just narrowly missed, striking the outside half of the post.
After three wins to kickstart their campaign, FC Bengaluru United would have been disappointed to lose the momentum with a loss and a draw. But this 3-0 win, shaped by some aggressive and focused play with clinical precision from the strikers and the midfield would have given their campaign a much-needed boost as they go into the mid-season break as table toppers.