KBFC(R) played our first match of the Kerala Premier League yesterday at the Maharajas College Ground in Kochi against Kerala United FC. In a tightly contested match, it was KUFC who emerged as the winners, snatching all three points.
Coach T. G. Purushothaman fielded a strong team yesterday to play our first match of the campaign. Shahajas T wore the captain’s armband and Sachin Suresh was the goalkeeper. Coach set up the team in a 4-3-3 formation with Sreekuttan, Suraj, and Nihal upfront. Mukhtasana who was part of the first-team squad for the ISL this year was given the responsibility to dictate the match in the midfield for KBFC(R). As expected it was a match between two equals and was translated on the field too. An early chance in the 3rd minute for the opponents was dealt neatly by Sachin Suresh. Our boys started off well as we were controlling the game in the earlier exchanges. Sujith, Suraj, and Sreekuttan were seen in full swing as back-to-back chances were coming our way. As the game progressed both teams were playing in full rhythm and it was end to end action at the Maharajas College Ground. A dangerous attack from the opponents in the 13th minute was valiantly stopped by our center-back Bijoy. Yohienba and Bijoy were the center back pair with Sujith and Amal occupying the left and right back positions respectively. In the first half of the game, both teams were playing it safe without compromising on the defense. However, both teams were also desperately searching for a goal, and in the 41st minute of the game, a foul by KUFC in their half was neglected by the referee robbing us a sure freekick. Ironically, the referee allowed a freekick for KUFC near our box for a soft tackle. Nithin Krishna’s free-kick found the back of the net, providing KUFC the much-needed lead. Adding to our dismay, KUFC slotted in another goal from a quick forward play. Bujair from KUFC converted the through the pass into the box leaving no chance for Sachin to block. Back-to-back goals provided a two-goal lead for KUFC before dispersing off for the halftime break.
The second was crucial for us as we have to use all the tricks in the bag to cancel out their lead. Our boys worked hard to get a goal back and get back in the game. So many promising efforts came our way but unfortunately, we couldn’t score a goal. It was a tough defense to break and our young colts were patiently trying everything for the breakthrough. In the 64th minute, a counter-attacking effort from our boys was wrongly dealt inside the box by KUFC awarding us a penalty. Nihal converted from the spot effortlessly making the scoreline 2-1. The boys were spirited after the goal and looked for one more goal. However, it was KUFC who scored another goal in the dying minutes, providing a 2 goal cushion for KUFC once again. A brace from Bujair helped KUFC take home all the three points home as the game ended 3-1 in favor of Kerala United FC. With this win, KUFC now holds the top position in group B of KPL.
Our boys played a good game yesterday. Now we have to look back into the game and find out the areas that need to be improved and work more on our strengths. KBFC (R) will face Mar Athanasius FA in our next game of the campaign on the 27th of March.