In what was a very disappointing week for the Super league, the Hero Super Cup got underway for clubs’ last chance to win silverware this season. We can look at this two ways, one is that Super League clubs have started rather lack-lustre or celebrate as the Player of the Week award has finally returned!
This week, only Bengaluru gave the ISL something to cheer about, coming from behind to win 2-1 and book their quarter-final spot. Someone influential in that win was our award winner and that was, Udanta Singh!
The knock-outs started with Chennaiyin hoping to put their title success behind them and push for the double, starting against Aizawl FC. The game was locked all the way, finishing 1-1 in normal time and then 2-2 after extra time. This led to a penalty shoot-out that the Super League will want to forget as their so-called number one seed was eliminated at the first time of asking.
Heavy Weight on their Shoulders
It then fell to Bengaluru to change the Leagues fortunes against a resolute Gokulam Kerala side. It didn’t start well either for the Blues, who went one-nil down to the away side much against the run of play.
At this stage, I-League fans must have been laughing to themselves. The top two ISL sides about to be knocked out by their so-called lower sides, you must be joking, right?
That didn’t last long as Bengaluru took control more and more as the game went on. But, every chance they seemed to get would just pass by, you could see the frustration from everyone, even the Captain, Sunil Chhetri.
This all changed in the 70th minute when Miku tapped in from close range after great work from Udanta beating his man down the right to put it on a plate for the Venezuelan forward. Finally, I hear you say.
And just as the game was destined to go to extra-time again, in true Bengaluru fashion they somehow found a winner. Udanta was sent through by Miiku, who returned the favour and the Indian winger rolled it past and into the net to spark wild celebrations in the home end.
Udanta Breaking Through
It has been somewhat of a breakthrough season for Udanta at Bengaluru this year. After making his senior Indian international debut back in 2016 at the age of 19, many would have expected big things from the youngster. But, he only made the one appearance for Mumbai that season and returned to Bengaluru for the season just past.
Singh made 19 appearances in the ISL and was a standout performer on the right-hand side. He may have only scored once all campaign but he did provide a great seven assists for his team-mates and was influential on his side’s route to the final. His total of seven was only matched by Pune’s Marcelo, which shows just how impressive he was.
Singh’s form continued into the Super Cup and with one goal and an assist on debut in the competition, he may be the key to success for the Blues.