Both the tacticians had very different takes on the game.
Bengaluru FC showed their class as they overpowered FC Goa in a thrilling encounter in the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Goa. Bengaluru took the lead late in the tightly contested first half through Rahul Bheke. The hosts then went down to 10 men as Mohammed Ali was given the marching orders after getting his second yellow card. Soon after, Dimas Delgado got sent off for the away side for a dangerous tackle.
Brandon Fernandes found the net to equalise for the home side only for Sunil Chhetri to head in his fifth goal of the season to give Bengaluru a hard-fought victory.
Sergio Lobera’s side fell to their first loss at home. “Like every other defeat, we take it badly. More so today, because I thought this was a game that was equally balanced,” he started off with.
“I think a draw would have been a fair result. After doing all the hard work to equalise, an individual mistake against a team like this is going to cost damage,“ The gaffer expressed his disappointment.
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Watch: FC Goa 1-2 Bengaluru FC highlights
“In an open game like this, when either time could have been able to win it, conceding a goal like that can’t be the crucial factor in the game. Ultimately, we had a few chances in the game that we didn’t take,” The Spaniard said.
Edu Bedia did not feature in the starting eleven for FC Goa. The former Barcelona coach explained the decision, “He has been carrying a niggle for the past couple of training sessions. Even today, he wanted to get into the game because he is a good professional and a strong player. But as you saw, even once he got out he wasn’t a hundred percent,” he signed off.
Carles Cuadrat’s side finished their exhausting road trip with a hundred percent record. Bengaluru FC are now second in the table behind FC Goa on goal difference with two matches in hand.
“I’m very happy because we know that Goa is a very good team and it is very difficult to win in this stadium,” Cuadrat began.
“We had planned for the game and the plan was working well. Two red cards, it changed everything,” he added.
“At the end, it was a question of the one who scores the second goal would go on and win. We were clinical in that moment and we got that goal,” The Bengaluru head coach said.
The three points were due to some strong performances on the pitch, especially from Rahul Bheke who opened the scoring for the Blues. Carles Cuadrat was full of praise for the full-back after the game.
“Rahul is doing a wonderful job. He is helping us a lot. He has the quality in both defence and attack. We are very happy with his performance.”
Despite Miku and Erik Paartalu being unavailable, the Blues put in a strong performance to get all three points.
“Today, was a very good example of the situation we have in the squad. Everybody from the starting of the season is very focused in their work. Tonight, we had to make two changes before we started the game and I am so happy that the boys know what we are practicing and what is happening during training.” The Blues head coach added.
Speaking of his side’s long-term goals, the Spaniard was cautious. “The goal is to arrive to the playoffs. Then, you have to go for the title in just two weeks,” he quipped.
“The work has to be done to reach the playoffs. Then the next three games you never know who is going to arrive with the best dynamic and best quality,” Cuadrat concluded.