Bora’s double strike sinks Minerva FC
Some goals come as a result of great dribbling and others through stunning shots. Defender Gaurav Bora combined both skills to score a brace that saw Chennai City FC seal a 3-1 win over Minerva Punjab FC to emerge Hero I-League champion at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday.
It was a big match and the pressure was obviously on Chennai City as it was gunning for its maiden title.
Minerva further increased the pressure hammering in the first goal of the night through a header from Roland Rasel Bilala.
It came in the third minute and the striker from Ukraine was quick to grab the chance and head past a desperate Chennai custodian Mauro Boerchio.
Sandro Rodriguez then upped the pace for the host and even took a few shots at goal without much luck.
In fact, Chennai City enjoyed the better of ball possession and kept moving at a brisk pace but the men from Punjab managed to cut short all attempts.
Chennai City also badly missed the services of brilliant play-maker Nestor Gordillo, serving a one-match suspension.
Chennai City returned to the dressing room disappointed at not having found the equaliser despite fighting really hard in the first half.
The second half saw the teams locked in a tight battle. Chennai City had scored plenty of goals during this period in earlier encounters. And, the fairly large crowd knew it and cheered them all the way.
The team did not let them down either, scoring the equaliser through a penalty, which Pedro Manzi, the team’s proven goal-scorer, converted with ease in the 56th minute.
It upped the confidence of the Chennai City men, who went full throttle in search of a win.
And, defender Bora’s powerful shot in the 69th minute, from close range, further strengthened its title chances. [It was almost around the same time that Marcus Joseph shot home for Gokulam FC against East Bengal in Kozhikode].
Minerva FC went flat out, but Chennai City scored another through the young Bora, and further handled the pressure-cooker situation with aplomb to carve out a historic title win.
The result: Chennai City (Pedro Manzi 56-pen, Gaurav Bora 69 & 90+2) bt Minerva Punjab FC 1 (Roland R. Bilala 3).