Pune, April 20 (IANS) Pune FC scored their biggest-ever I-League win by thrashing Air India FC 6-0 at the Shiv Chhatrapati Sports Complex, Mhalunge-Balewadi here Saturday.
The win was architected by a brace from striker James Moga (39th and 67th minute) and strikes from Boima ‘Jerry’ Karpeh (26th), Douhou Pierre (52nd), Jeje Lalpekhlua (74th) and Nikhil Kadam (86th).
With this win Pune FC regained their third position with 43 points from 23 games, second only to East Bengal on goal difference while Air India stay rooted on 13th with 19 points from 24 games.
After a slow start to the game, Pune FC took the lead midway through the half. Keeper Amrinder Singh saved Pradeep Mohanraj’s cross in from the right and pumped the ball ahead on a counter. Jerry controlled the ball on the left and beat a couple of defenders before sliding the ball past the keeper at the near post.
Striker Moga the doubled the lead six minutes from the break when he controlled a lob pass into the box and pushed the ball beyond keeper Sukhwinder Singh.
Pune FC took their two goal lead into the breather.
Seven minutes after the restart, Pune FC increased their lead. After Douhou’s initial shot was blocked Moga did well to find him on the right flank and the Ivorian finished with ease.
Two minutes later, Moga earned a penalty after being brought down in the box. However he failed to convert from the spot kick as his shot came off the vertical on the left.
Moga however completed his brace twelve minutes later. Substitute F. Lalrempuia – making his debut – dispossessed an opponent and found Jerry on the edge of the box. Jerry slid the ball to Moga on the right flank from where his unstoppable shot from an acute angle ended in the net.
Five minutes later, Douhou sent substitute Jeje in the clear on the left. Jeje shielded the keeper on the wing before sliding back to winger Khanthang Paite whose shot from distance agonisingly hit the crossbar.
Two minutes later, Jeje did get his name on the scoresheet when his finished off a counter after Moga found him in the clear on the left.
Four minutes from time, Pune FC made it six after substitute Nikhil scored his first senior goal for the club. Lalrempuia, Moga and Douhou combined on the right before Moga set up Nikhil on the left. The winger scored calmly past the helpless keeper from 8 yards.