Honours even between NorthEast United and Bengaluru after 1-1 draw

An early second-half goal from Rahul Bheke secured a point for Bengaluru FC against NorthEast United FC in Match 56 of the 2020-21 Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) at the Tilak Maidan Stadium in Vasco on Tuesday. In the 1-1 draw, the Highlanders went into the lead courtesy of a goal from Luis Machado but the Blues clawed their way back to earn their first point in five matches. 

  • Luis Machado gave his side the lead in the 27th minute.
  • Rahul Bheke scored the equaliser in the 49th minute for Bengaluru.

Both teams took some time to find their rhythm but it was Bengaluru who forced the first clear opportunity of the game in the 24th minute. Bheke crossed the ball from the right flank but Kristian Opseth’s header was straight at the goalkeeper.

And three minutes later, the Highlanders took the lead. Blues midfielder Dimas Delgado lost the ball to Federico Gallego and the playmaker found Machado at the far post and the Portuguese winger promptly slotted the ball into the bottom corner of the net to score his third goal of the season.

The Highlanders came close to scoring their second in the 35th minute but Suhair Vadakkepeedika’s header was inches off the target. In search of the equaliser, Bengaluru were denied by Highlanders custodian Gurmeet after the goalkeeper safely collected a shot from Cleiton Silva shortly before the end of the first half. 

Four minutes into the second half and Bengaluru were back in the game. Bheke cut in from the right and attempted a shot from just outside the box. Gurmeet misjudged the effort as the ball crept into goal to restore parity between the teams.

NorthEast United kept the pressure on their opponents as they looked to take the lead for a second time. A headed attempt from Suhair was pushed over the crossbar by Gurpreet Singh Sandhu in the 59th minute. Gurpreet was tested again in the 73rd minute but the goalkeeper palmed away Gallego’s effort from a freekick.

The stalemate came close to be broken on a couple of occasions thereafter but neither side could make their chances count and eventually settled for a point each as Bengaluru managed to bring an end to their run of four losses, while NorthEast United extended their winless streak to seven matches. 

Hero of the Match: Lalengmawia

Brought into the match as a last-minute change after injury to Lalrempuia Fanai, Lalengmawia commanded the midfield for the Highlanders. The youngster was also defensively sound, making five successful tackles, one clearance and one block for his team.

Other Match Awards:

Club Award: NorthEast United FC and Bengaluru FC

DHL Winning Pass of the Match: Federico Gallego (NorthEast United FC)

Watch the Match Highlights here:

 

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