It was a special day for Atlético de Kolkata coach Antonio Lopez Habas’ men as they bagged three points from their away game against Mumbai City FC in the Hero Indian Super League on Sunday evening. The defending champions, largely thanks to a hat-trick from Iain Hume, earned a 4-1 win in front of a 27,435-strong crowd at the DY Patil Stadium.
Throughout the first half, it was Mumbai City FC who had the upper hand in possession but ATK were better at passing and interceptions. Mumbai, for whom marquee player-cum-coach Nicolas Anelka made his first start of the season, created quite a few chances. One of such chances came in the 33rd minute through Frantz Bertin but the Haitian’s header missed the target. However, it was celebration time for Kolkata in the 34th minute when Hume latched onto a cross provided by Jaime Gavilan from the midfield. With the strike, the Canadian striker at last opened his account this season.
Hume had a red-letter day and doubled ATK’s lead in the added time of the first half. After being brought down in the Mumbai City box by Singam Subhash Singh, Hume went on to make good of the spot kick. ATK went into the second half with a 2-0 lead over the hosts.
The second half began with both teams clawing at each other. Mumbai City managed to create some close chances yet again, one of them coming in the 61st minute when Frederic Piquionne’s swivel-and-strike attempt in the box was nullified by Amrinder’s quick reflexes.
The crowds finally erupted in the 71st minute when Selim Benachour, who came on for Darren O’Dea at the break, pulled one back. It was his first goal of the season. After Sunil Chhetri’s unsuccessful attack on the ATK goalpost, it was the Tunisian’s shot that went in.
The euphoria shifted sides when ATK made it 3-1 with left-back Augustin Fernandes scoring in the 77th minute. A slick one-two with Sameehg Doutie yielded Augustin’s first of the season.
The lead was further increased by ATK in the 82nd minute with Hume completing his hat-trick, courtesy a well-timed assist again from Doutie. The scoreline read 4-1 in favour of the visitors but the match was far from over. The hopeful home supporters were on the edge of their seats with every run-in made by the Mumbai City attacking squad. However, ATK successfully held their lead to break their three-match losing streak. Mumbai, on the other hand, saw their three-match winning streak coming to an end.
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