FC Goa held ATK Mohun Bagan to a hard-fought 1-1 draw at the Fatorda Stadium in Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) 2020-21 on Sunday. Edu Garcia broke the deadlock for the Mariners and substitute Ishan Pandita scored the equaliser for Goa.
Second-half substitute Ishan Pandita’s 83rd-minute strike helped FC Goa salvage a point against ATK Mohun Bagan with a 1-1 draw on Sunday. ATKMB had taken the lead through Edu Garcia’s free kick in the 75th minute, but missed the chance to go within three points of league leaders Mumbai City FC after conceding late on.
Both the teams played an exciting and evenly fought match, trading missed opportunities.
The first half played itself out in predictable terms. FC Goa dominated possession — they had 62 per cent of the ball in that period — and sprayed passes around the pitch while ATKMB maintained their shape and ensured their opponents did not get many clear chances.
Both the sides, however, managed to find the crossbar in the opening half.
ATKMB went close in the 27th minute off a corner by Garcia. His delivery was headed into the ground by Subasish Bose. The ball bounced and looped over FC Goa keeper Naveen Kumar’s head. Unfortunately for ATKMB, it struck the crossbar and bounced back into play.
FC Goa returned the favour just four minutes later when Seriton Fernandes and Alberto Noguera played a quick one-two, before sending the former free on the right flank.
Seriton looked to square the ball but was unable to find a teammate in the area. That moment of hesitation allowed Sandesh Jhingan to get a foot on the ball but the deflection took it over ATKMB keeper Arindam Bhattacharja and on to the crossbar. FC Goa started looking more threatening after that. In the 36th minute, Bhattacharja was called into action, to stop a Saviour Gama shot.
FC Goa nearly scored soon after the restart. In the 50th minute, Seriton ran free down the right and looped a cross into the box, that eluded everyone. The ball crashed into the inside of the upright but somehow did not find the net. Six minutes later, Bhattacharja was alerted again to save a deflected shot from Brandon Fernandes. It was Juan Ferrando’s men who were running the show after half time, but then, against the run of play, ATKMB found a goal.
Roy Krishna was fouled by James Donachie just outside the box. ATKMB has always been threatening from set-pieces this season and this time was no different. Garcia stepped up and powered one into the right-hand corner of the net.
When ATKMB score a late goal, it’s usually the winner, but this time, there was a twist in the tale. With just minutes left on the clock, Pandita diverted it into the net from a corner to drag his team level.
The draw means ATKMB remain second with 21 points, still five points behind the leaders, with Goa just behind them at third with 19 points. Antonio Habas’ team will next face Chennaiyin FC on January 21, while Goa are up against Kerala Blasters FC on January 23.
Hero of the Match – Saviour Gama
Saviour Gama had a typically busy performance at the back for Goa. The Gaurs fullback got forward and was disciplined in defence. He created one chance for his teammates, made four successful tackles, three successful interceptions, three blocks and two clearances.
Other Match Awards:
Club Award – FC Goa and ATK Mohun Bagan
DHL Winning Pass of the Match – Edu Garcia (ATK Mohun Bagan)