Defending champions Bengaluru FC were held to a 1-1 draw by Chennai City FC at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Chennai.
Both sides made changes with the Blues bringing in Daniel Lalhlimpuia and Mandar Rao Dessai on for CK Vineeth and Marjan Jugovic. For Chennai City, Marcos Vinicius Thank, Joseph Clemente and Haroon Amiri were benched as Soosai Raj, Abhishek Das and Raegan Albarnas started this round 13 encounter.
The away side started strongly with Udanta Singh and Sunil Chhetri combining to set up a scoring opportunity for Mandar before it was parried away for a corner. Minutes later, Daniel missed another chance to put the visitors ahead as Udanta Singh started growing into the game.
Chennai City had a decent chance when Charles De Souza ran at the BFC defence before passing it to Raegan who had timed his run a bit too early.
They had the lead early in the second half as BFC centre-back John Johnson put a cross from Nandhakumar into his own net to give CCFC a shock lead. It did not last too long though.
Daniel and Udanta combined again on the edge of the box before Chennai custodian Karanjit Singh parried the latter’s cross onto the path of the Mizo striker who made no mistake in punishing the hosts for this defensive lapse.
Later, there were shouts of handball against Debabrata Roy but the Blues’ pleas for a penalty fell on deaf ears as the match ended all square.
With this draw, Bengaluru remain in fifth with 17 points from 12 matches, twelve points behind leaders Aizawl FC, who have played a game more. Chennai City climb upto ninth and are in ten points.
Chennai City FC 1 (John Johnson own goal) draw with Bengaluru FC 1 (Daniel Lalhlimpuia)
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