Pune, Bengaluru plays a goalless encounter, Pune City has an upper hand.
FC Pune City played a goal drought encounter against Bengaluru FC as the score-line stayed at 0-0 after the regulation period at the Shree Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex Stadium in Pune on Wednesday, in the first leg of the first semi-final of Hero Indian Super League (ISL) 2017-18. FC Pune would be facing The Blues on March 11 for the second leg at Sree Kranteerava Stadium.
Home teams soaked the pressure of the game easily and made a slow start to understand the game properly. It took them a quarter of an hour to get themselves into the game when at the 15th minute, Sahil Panwar chipped the ball inside the box and got connected to Ashique Kuruniyan but the latter could not control the ball as it was gathered by tall-man Gurpreet Singh Sandhu.
At the half-hour mark, Sunil Chhetri stepped up to take the set piece just outside the penalty box. Sunil Chhetri’s curler look destined to bulge inside the net but home team’s custodian had other thoughts. Vishal Kaith just tapped the ball over the ball to deny Sunil’s curler and keep score-line at 0-0.
Pune continued to surge forward and on the 38th minute Ashique Kuruniyan made his way from the midfield and busted a shot but his shot lacked precision as it went past over the bar.
Three Musketeers of Pune- Marcelinho, Alfaro and Diego Carlos combined together and were looking a threat as they combined nicely and played precisely with each other but the Referee blew the whistle as the first half came to an end.
FC Pune and Bengaluru FC came close but couldn’t get any closer as the score-sheet still remained without any entry.
Six minutes after inception, The Blues had a golden chance to go ahead in the tie when Boithang Haokip took the corner kick but Sunil Chhetri and Juanan crossed each-others way as the chance went begging.
At the 75th minute, Marcelinho crossed the ball to substitute Isaac but the latter couldn’t connect to the ball. It was the last of bit of the game action. After that both the teams substituted and the game went goalless. The game had many chances but no team could grab it as the first leg went goal-less.
Bengaluru FC would be welcoming FC Pune City to their home ground Sree Kranteerava Stadium on March 11 for the second leg as it would the decider who will go ahead in the league. If Pune City FC can score one goal and the game draws Pune City FC would be through to the Finals on away goal bonus. On another hand, Bengaluru FC have to win that encounter at any cost otherwise they would be out of the league.