Kochi: I-League leaders Bengaluru FC began their Federation Cup campaign in style with a 5-3 win over Sporting Clube de Goa in a thrilling match on Wednesday.
Beikhokhei (5th and 40th minute) and Robin Singh (66th and 90+3) scored two goals each while India captain Sunil Chhetri found the target in the 33rd minute. Boima Karpeh (74th), Beevan Mello (89th) and Victorino (90+1) scored for Sporting Clube de Goa in the Group B match at MDSC Stadium at Manjeri.
The late goals from Mello and Fernandes gave Bengaluru FC some headache after Boima had pulled one back for the Goan side who were down by four goals till the 73rd minute.
But, substitute Robin Singh netted the fifth and final goal of the match in the last minute of added time to thwart any chance of a miraculous Sporting comeback.
Robin scored in the second half before Sporting's mini-comeback to add to Bengaluru FC's three goal cushion in the first session. Boima, who scored one and set up the other two for Sporting, missed a penalty in the 58th minute.
Earlier, John Meyongar floated the ball into the area with Sean Rooney chasing it. Sporting goalkeeper Ravi Kumar fluffed with the ball falling nicely for Beikhokhei who slammed the ball into the back of the net.
The I-League leaders doubled their tally in the 30th minute when India captain Chhetri scored his 10th goal in all club competitions this season. Meyongar found Rino Anto on the right who controlled the ball beautifully to tee up Sunil. Keeping his goalscoring spree intact Chhetri headed in with minimal fuss to send the crowd into ruptures.
Beikhokhei notched up his second seven minutes later to underline Bengaluru's domination in the first half. Chhetri turned provider twisting and turning his marker to set up Beikhokhei who just had to tap in from close range. In Kochi, Shillong Lajong thrashed Salgaocar FC 4-0 in a Group C match at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.
Seikhohao Tuboi and Redeem Tlang scored one each for Lajong in the first half while Taisuke Matsugae scored the third in the 46th minute. Trinidad and Tobago World Cupper Glen Cornell scored the fourth in the 63rd minute of the game.
Cornell was the Lajong livewire and he made an impact whenever he received the ball. His ability to stay away from his marker and that sudden burst made it all the more difficult for Salgaocar.
Indian national team Goalkeeper Karanjit Singh came to Salgaocar's rescue when he thwarted Cornell's effort as early as the fifth minute.
However, 10 minutes later, a diving Karanjit could not get his hand to Seikhohao Tuboi's header from bulging the net. An unmarked Tuboi headed in Redeem Tlang's cross to perfection.
In the 37th minute, Cornell made his way past the Salgaocar defence and laid the foundation for Subhash Singh. But Subhash failed to double the score as he placed wide.
It did not make much of a difference as the very next minute Cornell went past Colaco to find Redeem in the clear. Redeem, gleefully, made it 2-0.
Taisuke Matsugae as in the 46th minute, he made it 3-0; his right-footer beating Karanjit hands down.
Perhaps, by the 63rd minute, Cornell felt it was imperative to have his name on the scoring sheet. Almost at will, he scored his team's fourth, elegantly lobbing it over a helpless Karanjit.