ATK Mohun Bagan enter third successive play-offs with a comeback victory over Blasters at Salt Lake: ISL 2022-23

ATK Mohun Bagan enter third successive play-offs with a comeback victory over Blasters at Salt Lake – ISL 2022-23: After going through a lean patch in the last few game weeks, the Mariners finally get rid of Play-off axe scare with a comeback victory over Kerala Blasters. Under pressure, Juan Fernando will breathe a sigh of relief as the Mariners will shift their focus to the biggest match of Indian Football i.e Kolkata Derby. Dimitrios Diamantakos put KBFC into the lead but a set piece allowed Carl McHugh to restore the parity. KBFC were down to 10 men due to Rahul KP’s two yellow cards and the Mariners made the most out of it as Carl McHugh once again found the back of the net with a sumptuous volley.

The victory puts ATK Mohun Bagan in the third spot of the Hero ISL points table, while Bengaluru FC and Kerala Blasters lose one place as they remain at 4th and 5th respectively.

ATK Mohun Bagan vs Kerala Blasters FC

The host had a few changes in their lineup. Ashique Kuruniyan served his three-match suspension while Carl McHugh and Hugo Bumous returned from their respective injuries. The notable names that were missing from the starting lineup were Adrian Luna (suspension), and Sahal Abdul Samad (Quad Discomfort).

In spite of two key players missing, Blasters started the game on the front, eventually taking a lead through Diamantakos courtesy of a great combination play between three foreigners (Ivan, Giannou, and Diamantakos). The Mariners gradually gained control in the midfield and switched the play when it was required. Eventually, those quick transitions earned them a free kick at the left side of the pitch. Dimitri Petratos’ perfect cross found unmarked Carl McHugh who made no mistake to find the back of the net. So, the first half was even.

Hugo Bumous couldn’t continue in the second half due to his long-term hamstring injury and Gallego replaced the no.10. Rahul KP was earlier booked for a bad challenge on Hugo. Things went bad to worse when Rahul went with a double-footed challenge on Ashique and Referee Rahul Kumar Gupta made no mistake to send him off with another yellow. The game was now perfectly set up for the Mariners to make the most of it. Eventually, the constant pressure paid off as Manvir’s lay set up McHugh who finished with a volley. The Mariners then saw off the last quarter of the game to seal their spot in the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Mariners will play their final game on 25 February against their arch-rivals East Bengal.

Read More: Hyderabad FC aim strong finish against Jamshedpur for last league game at home: ISL 2022-23

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