ISL 2020-21: David Williams wonder-strike gives ATK Mohun Bagan comfortable convert Bengaluru
A David Williams stunner, from just outside the box, gave ATK Mohun Bagan a 1-0 convert Bengaluru FC. Within the end it had been a cushty affair for the reigning champions, with BFC rarely threatening Arindam Bhattacharya’s goal.
BFC had made variety of changes, with Rahul Bheke at left-back to hide for the unfortunately injured Ashique Kuruniyan and therefore the pair of Udanta Singh and Deshorn Brown replacing Suresh Singh Wangjam and Kristian Opseth.
Habas, meanwhile, had made one change to the team that ground out the win against FC Goa – and it had been an attacking one, Edu Garcia replacing Jayesh Rane.
They were similarly attack-minded on the pitch. ATKMB took the sport to BFC from the off, with the front three of Williams, Roy Krishna and Manvir Singh a continuing menace, and with Garcia controlling midfield behind them they were much the higher side through the sport .
In the 11th minute, Subhasish Bose drilled during a low cross for Manvir, who got the higher of Bheke. But his first-time shot was easily caught by the Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. His second attempt was found out by Garcia with a sublime through ball, which was also addressed by the Bengaluru keeper. Sunil Chhetri did test Arindam Bhattacharja but it went straight to the ATKMB custodian.
With BFC playing a high line, Krishna had many space to run in behind, but was caught offside thrice before breaking through within the 16th minute. Juanan, though, shielded him superbly and prevented an attempt on goal. At the opposite end, a poor clearance led to a tame Erik Paartalu header, right into the arms of Arindam.
Then, within the 33rd minute, David Williams stepped up. An extended ball from Carl McHugh was stopped dead with a deft touch before he worked space at the sting of the box and curled an exquisite strike past a hapless Gurpreet.
The last half followed much an equivalent pattern, with Williams skying a presentable chance soon after the restart. Bengaluru had more attacks, coming closest within the 73rd minute. A careless goalkick from Arindam saw Leon Augustine and Suresh combine to release Cleiton Silva within the six-yard box who scraped an attempt wide.
As the game went on, ATKMB sank deeper and deeper and eventually saw off a rather dull-looking BFC side comfortably. They’re now second on the table, on goal difference, having taken 16 points in 7 matches. They face Chennaiyin next on Dec 29. Bengaluru, meanwhile, remain third with 12 points in seven, two beyond the hot-in-pursuit NorthEast United and Jamshedpur. They face the latter on Dec 28.