The Bold Voice of J&K

Sporting face Bengaluru FC in second semi-finals

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FATORDA: High on confidence after beating East Bengal, Sporting Clube de Goa will be looking to carry forward the momentum when they clash against Bengaluru FC in the second semi-final of the Hero Federation Cup here tomorrow at the Nehru Stadium, Fatorda.
Sporting kept their semifinal hopes alive when they beat Royal Wahingdoh after being beaten by by Dempo FC and Mumbai FC in the league phase.
Thereafter they did not look back and went on to beat East Bengal 4-3 with the help of a Victorino Fernandes hat-trick to make it to the semifinals.
Sporting’s coach Alex Alvares is full of praise for Fernandes.
The win has boosted the team’s morale ahead of tomorrow’s match against Bengaluru FC who are unbeaten so far just like Dempo FC.
“Bengaluru FC are a strong side playing a compact game with good foreigners but we are capable to turn things around them with good support for the crowd,” stated Alvares.
Sporting success will largely depend how Kulu orchestrates their moves from the middle to give Anthony Wolfe and Victorino Fernandes the space to strike.
Bengaluru FC, on the other hand, are expected to keep the momentum going against Sporting tomorrow.
They have a compact side and depend more on their foreign recruit defender John Johnson and Curtis Osano along with playmaker Josh Walker and striker Sean Rooney.
Captain Sunil Chhetri is the leading scorer of the tournament — four goals — along with Sporting Clube de Goa Victorino Fernandes. He has combined well along Robin Singh upfront who is also capable of striking from distance.
Goa has been a happy hunting ground for Bengaluru (eight wins, two draws and just one loss), Westwood knows well enough to take things for granted.
Bengaluru have played sporting three times in all competitions, winning two and drawing one. Interestingly, the blues played Sporting in the Federation Cup opener last year in Kerala where Bengaluru completely outplayed the Goa club to win 5-3.
The I-League champions went through a light session today and skipper Sunil Chhetri sounded confident about the game.
“We’ve been working hard through the tournament and our performances have been proof enough. But there’s still work to be done if we are to make the final,” Chhetri said.

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