ATK Mohun Bagan’s early goal rush sinks SC East Bengal in Kolkata derby
ATK Mohun Bagan claimed the Kolkata derby honours as they recorded a comfortable 3-0 win over rivals SC East Bengal in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL) match at the Tilak Maidan in Vasco, Goa on Saturday.
All the scoring was done in the first half as Roy Krishna (12’), Manvir Singh (14’) and Liston Colaco (23’) put the Mariners in a commanding position which they never surrendered as SC East Bengal failed to register a single shot on target in the match.
After an even start to the gameh, ATK Mohun Bagan took control of the match around the ten-minute mark and it didn’t take them long to open the scoring.
Antonio Habas’ men opened up their rivals with a well-worked passing move that saw Pritam Kotal play a one-two with Manvir Singh as he made an overlapping run on the right hand side and found Krishna with a cut-back. The Fijian made no mistake in slotting it into the bottom corner and put ATK Mohun Bagan in front.
SC East Bengal were stunned again this time from Manvir who thumped in his team’s second goal after Joni Kauko had played him through with a defence-splitting pass just two minutes later.
It went from bad to worse for SC East Bengal in the 23rd minute when goalkeeper Arindam Bhattacharja failed to collect a heavy pass in the box allowing Colaco a tap-in in an empty goal.
With their tails up, the Mariners pressed ahead for another goal and almost found it four minutes later when Krishna fired goalwards. His shot though was straight at Bhattacharja.
Bhattacharja who had suffered an injury in the build-up to Colaco’s goal had to be replaced by Suvam Sen in the 33rd minute just two after Kauko missed a great chance to make it 4-0 for ATK Mohun Bagan.
SC East Bengal had the best spell of the game in first-half stoppage time and should have pulled one back in the fourth minute of added time when Antonio Peresovic’s shot was blocked by an ATK Mohun Bagan defender.
Manuel Diaz replaced Tomislav Mrcela with Amir Dervisevic at the start of the second half but it didn’t have much impact on the game as ATK Mohun Bagan continued to dominate.
The Mariners took the foot off the pedal a bit in the second half in terms of their attacking endeavours that allowed SC East Bengal to have a spell of possession after the hour mark but the Red and Gold brigade lacked a cutting edge to hurt Habas’ side.
ATK Mohun Bagan squandered chances to add a fourth goal as substitute David Williams was guilty of lacking sharpness twice in the final ten minutes. Firstly, in the 81st minute, he got the final pass wrong at the end of a sweeping counter-attacking move and later in the dying seconds of the game when he fired wildly over with just the goalkeeper to beat.
However, ATK Mohun Bagan ran out comfortable winners in the end as they earned the bragging rights in Kolkata.
Habas’ men face another big game next as they take on defending champions Mumbai City FC on Wednesday while SC East Bengal lock horns with Chennaiyin FC two days later.