Bengaluru FC booked their place in the Indian Super League (ISL) final after beating Mumbai City FC in a thrilling penalty shootout that ended in sudden death. Gurpreet Singh Sandhu saved penalties early in the game and late in the shootout as Bengaluru FC won the tiebreaker after the match was tied on aggregate 2-2, following Mumbai City FC’s 2-1 result after of the extension.
After 16 penalties had been scored, Sandhu saved Mehtab Singh’s penalty before Sandesh Jhingan scored the winning penalty to give the home team a 9–8 win on penalties.
The hosts started the game with confidence, but the best chance fell to Mumbai City FC after ten minutes. Sandhu fouled Jorge Diaz in the box for a penalty, but managed to shoot straight away when Greg Stewart stepped up to take it, while Bengaluru FC kept their lead intact.
Midway through the first half, Mumbai fell further behind in the match. From the left flank, Siva Narayanan fired a cross for Javi Hernández, who managed to head past Phurba Lachenpa to make it 2-0 on aggregate.
That goal put the league shield holders into the next march, and they quickly rallied at the half-hour mark. Sandhu was called into action again when he saved Rowlin Borges’ effort at the near post. However, the rebound went straight to an unmarked Bipin Singh, who deflected the ball home.
In the 66th minute, Mumbai City FC leveled the tie in the semi-finals thanks to Mehtab’s impressive header from a corner kick. Three minutes later, Lachenpa hit a shot from Hernández as the game headed into extra time with no significant chances for either team.
In extra time, both teams had chances that they did not take advantage of. Diaz was intercepted by Vikram Singh with a low cross, but he failed to keep it on target from close range. Towards the end of the first period, Lachenpa saved Roy Krishna’s header, and Mourtada Fall almost kicked the rebound into the back of his own net, but was saved by the post.
In the second period, Pablo Pérez came close to capitalizing on Lachenpa’s spill before he rallied to hit him. In the end, Lachenpa came to the rescue again for the visitors when he saved Alan Costa’s header as the game went to penalties and Bengaluru FC controlled their nerves to win.
Bengaluru FC will now face ATK Mohun Bagan or Hyderabad FC in the ISL final on Saturday, match 18.