North Korean Kim Song Yong struck a brace in Bengaluru FC's convincing 3-0 win over Shillong Lajong to emerge as table toppers in the I-League, in Bengaluru, on Sunday.
The 28-year-old Yong scored in the 35th minute of the first half and another one in the second half, while CK Vineeth found the net in first three minutes of game.
The Lajong forwards, including Brazilian Uilliams Bomfin, could not breach the rival defence as Bengaluru FC routed the visitors in a one-sided match at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium. With their third consecutive win, Bengaluru ended at number one place with nine points in the league, toppling Mohun Bagan who have six points from two matches.
Bengaluru had beaten Salgaocar 2-1 in their inaugural match and then defeated debutant Aizawl FC through Curtis Osana's solitary goal. The hosts were in control of the match soon after Vineeth scored a superb goal, a left-footer which defeated the Lajong goal-keeper in the third minute of the game.
Bengaluru constantly attacked the net of the Lajong and missed a few more chances thereafter, until in 35th minute when Yong came to the party, scoring a goal of a deflection from the Lajong goal-kepeer, which helped the hosts take 2-0 lead. Vineeth orchestrated a magnificent passing shot to Eugenon Lyngdoh who aimed to pierce through the Lajong goal- keeper, who handsomely saved the kick, but could not stop the North Korean from scoring his first goal for his club. After the change of ends, the hosts continued from where they left in the first 45 minutes and constantly created opportunities to take the lead even further.
Soon, Yong once again struck delightfully to make the crowd go berserk with a magnificent third goal for Bengaluru, his second in the debut match. Yong would have struck his hat-trick in 82nd minute, but missed as he hit wide off the goal-keeper. The North Korean was declared man of the match.
Taisuke stars in Mumbai's win over Salgaocar
Captain Taisuke Matsugae scored a goal and did the spadework for another as Mumbai FC broke their winless and goalless streak by getting the better of Salgaocar SC of Goa 2-1 in Mumbai.
The Mumbai outfit enjoyed a slender 1-0 half-time advantage at the Cooperage football ground.
After failing to score in 180 minutes of play in their first two games, Mumbai FC finally ended the goal drought when Japanese midfielder Taisuke blasted home the opening goal in the 37th minute.
Later Sushil Kumar Singh did well to put the finishing touches from a Taisuke assist in the 48th
Despite trailing 0-2, the Goans fought on gamely and came up with a couple of raids to put Mumbai FC defence under pressure and found the net in the 66th minute through Jackichand Singh.
In the 85th minute, Salgocar nearly got the equaliser, but Darryl Duffy's header off a Gurjinder Singh free-kick graced the upright and sailed over.
Both teams showed little urgency at the start.
But midway through the first session, Mumbai FC coach Khalid Jamil's decision to switch Eric Brown with Jayesh Rane on the left midfield helped their attack come to life.
The hosts messed up a few chances with Izumi Arata and Taisuke missing the target.
However, Taisuke atoned for his miss when he found the target with a rasping right-footed drive from just outside the box. Salgaocar's custodian Karanjit Singh managed to get his finger tips to the ball but could not prevent it from entering the goal.
On the stroke of the half-time, Mumbai FC goal survived a scare when goalkeeper Pawan Kumar fumbled to collect Gurjinder Singh's free-kick from the right. The ball deflected off his hands and struck the crossbar. He again failed to collect cleanly but defender Min-Chol Son, who had a good game, cleared the ball away for a corner.
Soon after resumption, the Mumbai side doubled the lead when Sushil Kumar Singh did well to put the finishing touch after Taisuke, later declared the man of the match, had done the spadework.
Jackichand pulled one back for the Goans when he sent a long chip from the right which eluded the outstretched hands of Mumbai goalkeeper Pawan Kumar and dipped into the far corner of the net.
Thereafter, Salgaocar continued to pile on the pressure but they were kept in check by some resolute defending.