ATK Mohun Bagan played better but FC Goa looked more dangerous when in possession, but the former proved to be worthy of the three points as they beat visitors FC Goa by an odd goal from three (2-1) at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati stadium in Kolkata on Wednesday.
ATK who lost their away game to FC Goa without a semblance of challenge, played authoritatively today with Dimitri Petratos rightly being judged the player of the match for his opening goal and assist to the second.
Dimitri showed his character when the game was just nine minutes old when ATK earned a throw-in and Liston Colaco was quick at throwing it to Dimitri who ran past the defensive line and seeing the goalkeeper in front of him fired a shot to Dheeraj’s left for the first goal of the evening.
Buoyed by the goal, ATK kept up the pressure and nearly doubled the lead a few minutes later when Liston Colaco flicked the ball to Ashish Rai who saw his cross go a begging.
FC Goa, in the meanwhile, played in bouts of fits with their players really not able to dominate possession with the Bagan lads showing better feet in recovering balls.
The visitors got their first chance to test Mohun Bagan keeper Vishal Kaith when they were awarded a free kick twenty minutes into the match. Dead ball specialist stepped up to the occasion and sent in a low try that was met by a gliding defender Anwar Ali for the equaliser. The ball slid through Vishal’s legs.
The equalizer added thrust to FC Goa attack and Reddem Tlang got an opportunity a few minutes later when he ran down the right unchallenged but his cross did not have merit.
FC Goa had another few dead-ball tries thereafter but none proved fruitful. Defender Anwar Ali came close to scoring again but this time he fouled his marker before connecting his head to the ball.
The second half started with both teams preferring caution to aggression and barely seven minutes into the second half and Mohun Bagan had their 20,000-odd fans in raptures again.
This time, it was Hugo Boumous who applied the finishing touches to a move conceived by Ashique, blended by Dimitri and poured in FC Goa by Hugo Boumous.
A few minutes later, Mohun Bagan earned a corner and off it, there was an appeal for a handball as the ball appeared to graze past Marc Hernandez but the referee would have none of it.
There was a flurry of substitutions thereafter but none proved to change the character of the game with Mohun Bagan looking threatening on the counter.
FC Goa’s Anwar Ali got another opportunity around the 75th minute through another set piece taken by Edu. This time too, Anwar could not get the ball to kiss the opponent's net.
As time was running out, Mohun Bagan began taking the ball to the FC Goa end and preferred to play on the lines hoping for time to fly and, in the end, it did with the hosts jumping to the third place of the table.