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regular-article-logo Thursday, 20 June 2024

Another blow to ATK Mohun Bagan

After the change of ends Kuala Lumpur City FC players showed intent and got the breakthrough at the hour mark through captain Paulo Josue

Arindam Bandopadhyay Calcutta Published 08.09.22, 04:03 AM
Jubilant Kuala Lumpur City FC players after defeating ATK Mohun Bagan at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.

Jubilant Kuala Lumpur City FC players after defeating ATK Mohun Bagan at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday. Picture by Santosh Ghosh

ATK Mohun Bagan’s dream of playing in the AFC Cup final ended as they suffered a 3-1 defeat against Kuala Lumpur City FC in the tournament’s inter-zonal semi-final itself at the Salt Lake Stadium on Wednesday.

After the change of ends Kuala Lumpur City FC players showed intent and got the breakthrough at the hour mark through captain Paulo Josue. The tall midfielder put his team ahead with a stunning left-footed strike from outside the box. ATK Mohun Bagan goalkeeper Vishal Kaith was helpless. Bagan players tried to score but they were unable to put sustained pressure on the rival defence. In the 90th minute,Bagan were given a lifeline by Fardin Ali Molla.

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The substitute, who came on for Brendan Hamil, restored the parity for the hosts only to see his team concede two goals inside three minutes. Fakrul Aiman Sidid scored in the second minute of injury-time and Romel Morales made it 3-1 in the fifth minute of added time.

At 1-1, all ATK Mohun Bagan needed to do was to keep the shape but there was a complete communication breakdown in the backline. The visitors pounced on that and hammered in two goals to seal a final berth. ATK Mohun Bagan have found it difficult to score goals in the four matches they played before Wednesday’s game and the match against the Malaysian side was no different. In the first 15 minutes, the home team could have taken a two-goal lead.

Liston Colaco and Manvir Singh could have become the toast of the town but they fumbled. On the other hand, the visitors utilised the few that came their way. After the Durand Cup exit, the AFC Cup debacle. ATK Mohun Bagan coach Juan Ferrando will have a lot of questions to answer.

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