ATK Mohun Bagan storm into top-four with 2-1 win over Hyderabad

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ATK Mohun Bagan broke into the top four with a 2-1 win over league leaders Hyderabad FC and extended their unbeaten streak to nine games in the Indian Super League here on Tuesday.

After a sterile first half, Liston Colaco opened the scoring for ATKMB in the 56th minute with Manvir Singh (59) doubling their lead in the next three minutes.

Joel Chianese (67th) pulled one back for Hyderabad but was unable to score another goal as they succumbed to their third loss of the season. But they still remain at the top of the table with 26 points from 15 games.

ATK Mohun Bagan moved into fourth position with 23 points in his 13-game kitty.

Both teams started off slow but upped the ante as the game progressed. ATKMB seemed the most promising side with Hugo Boumous creating many chances. The Frenchman combined well with Colaco and David Williams as the Mariners looked to open up the Hyderabad defense.

Boumous forced Laxmikant Kattimani into a fine save while at the other end Amrinder Singh held off Bartholomew Ogbeche.

Hyderabad was on the defensive against the constant probing from ATKMB. Going against the grain of the game, Nikhil Poojary fired just over Joel Chianese’s low cross.

The Mariners suffered a double whammy when the excellent Boumous and the ever-reliable Carl McHugh were injured and had to be replaced by Joni Kauko and the young Kiyan Giri, respectively.

The second half started on a frantic note, Rohit Danu found the crossbar in his path after he fired a poor ATKMB clearance from a Hyderabad free kick.

Shortly after, ATKMB took the lead in a counterattack. Williams found Colaco, who dove down the channel, clipped and curved the ball at the far post, leaving Kattimani with no chance.

It was Colaco’s sixth goal of the campaign and he found the net against his former team with poise.

Three minutes later, Manvir doubled the ATKMB count. This time, Joni Kauko fed Manvir a beautiful ball for the latter to beat Kattimani and slip the ball into the back of the net with ease.

Stung by the double hit in quick succession, Hyderabad went on the offensive and got their reward when Joao Victor’s powerful free kick was hit only as far as Chianese by Amrinder, the Aussie then guided the ball into goal.

Hyderabad coach Manolo Márquez brought in Javier Siviero in place of Víctor with 15 minutes left on the clock in search of an equalizer. Danu saw the shot of him saved by Amrinder moments later when the yellow army didn’t pull any punches.

Colaco then missed a kangaroo with the goal in front of him after he and Nassiri exchanged passes into the mouth of the goal. Danu also missed a good scoring opportunity with an Akash Mishra cross before Colaco messed up his lines from close range again.

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