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Hero ISL Playoffs: Bengaluru FC register controversial win over Kerala Blasters

Hero ISL Playoffs: Bengaluru FC register controversial win over Kerala Blasters

Hero ISL Playoffs is taking its full shape now as the knockout rounds began today on the 3rd of March in Bengaluru where the Bengaluru FC, the 4th placed team in the ISL points table, faced off Kerala Blasters FC, the 5th place team in the first match.

After a season long battle between the clubs, a total of 6 clubs reached the final phase of the Indian Super League (ISL), the ISL Playoff stage. While Mumbai City FC and Hyderabad FC qualified directly for the semi-final, ATK Mohun Bagan, Bengaluru FC, Kerala Blasters and Odisha FC scheduled themselves for one-legged face-off.

Hero ISL Playoffs: Bengaluru FC vs Kerala Blasters ends in a controversial note

The first match of the Hero ISL Playoffs took place today in Bengaluru between the hosts Bengaluru FC and its arch-rival Bengaluru FC. It was a great match between both the teams as both not wanting to give an inch to the opposition side.

However, in all fair and square, it was actually the hosts Bengaluru FC who looked a more comfortable side throughout the match timing until the last 15 minutes where we equal chances for both the team, maybe rather Kerala Blasters being a little more aggressive.

But, after a cracking fight, there wasn't a result between both the sides after regulation time of 90 minutes and the added minutes of the game. As such, we went to extra-time in the match. 

Both teams were working hard to find the opening goal, but it was actually the hosts Bengaluru FC who struck first that erupted major controversy. At the 96th minute of the match, Bengaluru FC received a free-kick a little outside the Kerala Blasters box.

And as the Kerala Blasters players and goalkeeper were setting the defensive wall, India and Bengaluru FC captain Sunil Chhetri cheeky quick free-kick and dunk the ball over the defense and the keeper's head for the goal.

However, the Goal was not well received by the Kerala Blasters FC players and their coaching staff including head coach Ivan Vukomanović, who frustrating called the team back and went back inside the dressing room while the match was still on. The Blasters players' complaint was that they were not ready and neither did they hear the referee's whistle.

The match officials and the Bengaluru FC players remained on the ground with Kerala players having already left. They waited for a full 120 minutes as per the rule and the referee blew the final whistle, declaring Bengaluru FC the winner.

Hero ISL Playoffs: Mumbai City FC vs Bengaluru FC semi-finals

After this controversial win for the Blues, they will now face off the Hero ISL League Shield Winners' winner Mumbai City FC in the semi-final 1 with the first-leg to be played on the 7th March in Mumbai and the 2nd-leg to be played on the 12th of March in Bengaluru. Mumbai City FC qualified directly for the semi-final for finishing in top 2 in the Hero ISL 2022-2023 points table.

Bengaluru FC vs Kerala Blasters: Today ISL match referee name

After the controversial result in the match today, many fans are now searching for the referee's name. Actually today's match was conducted by reference Crystal John, who have not had a great season as a the referee this season.

Is Kerala Blasters out of ISL?

The next thing that the fans now want to is Kerala Blasters out of ISL 2022-2023 season now. So yes, there won't be any 2nd leg match between the sides and a loss against Bengaluru FC means that Kerala Blasters FC are now out of the ISL 2022-2023 Trophy race.

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