The game marked the sixth defeat for the hosts in the league.
Victorino Fernandes and Marcus Mascarenhas scored braces in the second half, as Sporting Clube de Goa hammered Bardez FC by a 5-1 margin in the Goa Professional League match played at Duler Stadium on Monday afternoon.
With these three points, Sporting closed the gap to table-toppers FC Goa to just a point, as they have 25 points from 11 matches, while Bardez has six points from 10 matches.
Both the teams had a few changes to their side from their respective last match as Glan Martins, Clemente Joseph and Suresh Thapa made the cut for the Flaming Orange, who outclassed Corps of Signals in their previous outing. While Ong Lepcha and Baichung Bhutia were the two changes for the Bardez side, who drew their last match against Velsao SCC.
The match was completely restricted to the midfield in the first 30 minutes, as both the sides did not show any urgency to open their tally. On the half hour mark, Bardez had the best chance to surge ahead when they were awarded a free-kick just outside the box, as Sporting keeper Melroy Fernandes made a dangerous tackle on Ong. The custodian was lucky to escape with just a caution for a reckless tackle outside the box. However, Bhutia failed to keep the free-kick on target.
At the other end, Marcus Mascarenhas who replaced U-20 midfielder Thapa had a glorious chance to put Sporting into the lead in the 35th minute, when their skipper Victorino Fernandes brilliantly set him up in front of an open goal, but the forward shot wide from six yards.
A few minutes later, Cajetan should have taken the Flaming Orange into the lead when he easily danced past three Bardez defenders in the box, but his shot was blocked by another defender at the cost of a corner.
Unlike the first half, the start of the second saw lots of action from both ends. Sporting were the first to come close to scoring in the 49th minute, when a long throw-in by George D’Souza was nicely headed on to an unmarked Cajetan by Marcus, but the midfielder headed over the crossbar from point-blank range. Whereas Bardez should have scored in the 51st minute when Rungsing Muinao found Ong with a superb through pass, but the forward saw his strike rebound off the post.
Sporting finally broke the deadlock in the very next minute, when Egyptian midfielder Fady Riad produced a defence-splitting through pass to Marcus, who had missed an open chance in the first half, but this time the striker made no mistake to chip the ball over the onrushing Bardez keeper Royal Basumatory to make it 1-0 for his side.
Bardez took just four minutes to level terms, as the Sporting defence cleared Richard Cardoz’s corner, but Babun Das’s powerful strike from the edge of the box entered the top corner making it 1-1 for Bardez. Sporting had a chance to once again take the lead when substitute Quan Gomes curled the ball to Marcus in the box, but he shot wide.
Sporting came out attacking in the last 25 minutes and scored four more goals as first, Cajetan’s free-kick was headed in by Marcus, but Bardez keeper Royal made a brilliant save. However, he could not stop Alton Vaz’s tap-in from going in as Sporting surged ahead in the 64th minute.
Current top scorer Victorino also added two more goals to his tally, as in the 78th minute, Bardez defender Sonam Bhutia made a mistake in trying to clear the ball, taking advantage of the same, the skipper easily dribbled past Bardez keeper Royal and nicely finished the ball in the net to make it 3-1. He took five more minutes to net his second goal of the match as this time he delivered a simple tap-in to Glan’s low cross.
Marcus also completed his brace in added-time, when he collected a smart pass from Quan and clinically beat the Bardez custodian from inside the box to make it 5-1 for the Flaming Orange.