Delhi FC outclassed Madan Maharaj FC 6-0 to end their maiden I-League Qualifiers campaign on a high at the Bangalore Football Stadium here on Saturday. Delhi FC scored three goals on either side of half time with Nikhil Mali and Gagandeep Bali netting a brace each, while Sergio Barboza and captain Anwar Ali added one goal each.
The result meant that Delhi FC finish on four points from three matches while Madan Maharaj remain winless in the final round of the I-League Qualifiers. Despite the win, Delhi FC are out of contention for the lone spot in the I-League. The I-League spot will be decided in the match between Rajasthan United FC and Kenkre FC later in the day.
Delhi FC dominated proceedings from the first whistle, having an early chance to take the lead when Brazilian Barboza ran clean through on goal with only the goalkeeper to beat. Barboza was caught up by a retrieving Pranendra Singh Thakur, but the latter’s last-ditch tackle on the Delhi attacker was deemed a foul inside the box by the referee. Barboza stepped up to take the resultant spot-kick and calmly converted in the fifth minute.
In the 13th minute, Jagannath Sana produced MMFC’s only shot on target in the first half as he embarked on a wonderful individual run, twisting and turning to evade tackles from the chasing Delhi FC players before hitting a low drive and drawing a fine save from goalkeeper Suraj Mallick. Delhi doubled their lead in the 19th minute through winger Nikhil. The goal came from a well-worked set piece routine.
With the MMFC players anticipating a shot from Ali’s free-kick from a promising position, Delhi caught them off guard as Ali played in Barboza who drilled in a low cross that was tapped in comfortably by Nikhil at the edge of the six-yard box. Nikhil soon doubled his personal tally and made it 3-0 for Delhi FC in the 21st minute.
Delhi FC resumed the second half just as they had played all through the first, and made it 4-0 through substitute striker Gagandeep. The second-half substitute grabbed a brace seven minutes later and made it 5-0 for Delhi FC in the 63rd minute. Delhi FC compiled further misery on MMFC ten minutes later in the 73rd minute as they racked up half a dozen goals.