Mohun Bagan Super Giant recovered from a goal’s deficit to beat Abahani Limited Dhaka 3-1 in an AFC Cup south zone play-off match, at the Salt Lake Stadium here on Tuesday.
Cornelius Stewart put Abahani Dhaka ahead early in the first half before Jason Cummings restored parity for Mohun Bagan from the penalty spot before the break.
Milad Soleimani, who scored an own goal, and Armando Sadiku found the back of the net after the interval to help Mohun Bagan complete its win in style.
The win brought back memories of last year as Mohun Bagan repeated the result against the same opponent, at the same venue and in the same stage of the tournament, to progress to the South Zone group league stage.
Mohun Bagan joins Odisha FC, Bashundhara Kings (Bangladesh) and Maziya Sports and Recreation Club (Maldives) in the next round of the AFC Cup, which will be played later in the year in a home and away format.
Needing a win to get through the preliminary knock-out stage, the Indian Super League champion Mohun Bagan started on the right note but faltered in the final third where both the Indian international Sahal Abdul Samad and French midfielder Hugo Boumous were combining well to keep the opposition under constant pressure.
The home side created at least three scoring opportunities in the first quarter of the action but Abahani found the lead off a nice counterattack in the 17th minute. Mohun Bagan goalkeeper Vishal Kaith spilt an easy catch trying to gather a shot and allowed Stewart to tap home.
Mohun Bagan got its act together towards the end of the first half and got the opportunity to equalise when Liston Colaco was brought down inside the Abahani box by defender Sushanto Tripura. Cummings made no mistake from the resultant penalty to restore parity for the host.
Abahani exploited the AFC Cup regulations allowing six foreigners on the field and did seem to garner some early advantage which helped it in gaining the early lead. But Mohun Bagan, which fielded four foreigners in Cummings, Sadiku, Boumous and newcomer Hector Yuste, found its form and shape midway through the opening half.
Cummings’ equalizer did fire up the host after the break as it made incursions in the opposition box with more purpose. It was the Boumous and Liston Colaco combination in the attacking third that got the reward for the host in the 58 th minute.
As Mohun Bagan pressed for the lead, Abahani defender Soleimani found his own net as he tried to clear a low cross that Boumous had sent in for Sadiku. The third goal came two minutes later as Liston set up Sadiku, whose shot hit goalkeeper Mohammad Sahidul Alam before rolling into the goal.
- NZ vs PAK Live Score, World Cup 2023: New Zealand 307/3 (40); Mitchell, Chapman eye strong finish after Ravindra, Williamson fall
- England vs Australia Live score, ICC World Cup 2023 updates: ENG wins toss, to bowl first against AUS; Dream 11 fantasy team; Live streaming info
- NZ vs PAK, World Cup 2023: Ravindra becomes first New Zealand batter to score three WC hundreds
- PAK vs NZ: Williamson becomes highest run-getter for New Zealand in ICC ODI World Cup history
- SMAT Live Score Semifinal 1: Badoni hits fifty to power Delhi to 183, Live Updates