ISL: ATK goes top with 2-0 win over FC Goa

ATK returned to the top of the ISL standings downing the current leader FC Goa in an absorbing clash at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on Saturday.

ATK celebrates its 2-0 win over FC Goa in the ISL today.   -  ISL

ATK returned to the top of the ISL standings downing the current leader FC Goa in an absorbing clash at the Salt Lake Stadium here on Saturday. Egged on by a raucous crowd of over 23,000, the home side effectively put behind the disappointment of its loss against Kerala Blasters and went on to get the better of one of the most proficient sides of the tournament.

Defender Pritam Kotal scored the first goal making the most of a nice assist from Roy Krishna. The Fijian striker impressed with his gritty performance as he set up the second goal, which was finished by the second-half substitute, Jayesh Rane.

As it happened| ISL: Pritam Kotal, Jayesh Rane strike to send ATK to summit

Having lost the first leg 2-1 while visiting Goa, ATK thus completed its revenge in the perfect manner. The win took ATK to 24 points from 13 matches and it dislodged FC Goa (also on 24 points) from the top based on a better goal difference.

The opening session saw a lot of action but that failed to alter the scoreline as both sides struggled in the final third. A barren first half was the result as the opponents appeared to devote more time on the creative front and failed to find a positive opening.

The scene changed after the break as ATK went for the kill. The opportunity came in the 47th minute when ATK midfielder Francisco Javier played his free-kick in the Goa box where Krishna collected it neatly and darted up to set up a nice lob at the goalmouth. Kotal timed his jump well for a header that went, in hitting the hands of the Goa custodian Mohammad Nawaz.

Goa was not willing to accept the setback and pressed hard for the equaliser. The ATK defence had to endure a barrage of Goa attacks from the hour mark but it somehow managed to keep its shape and successfully held the opposition back. The host took the match away from Goa in the 88th minute when Rane found the right touch to send a cross from Krishna home. 

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