ATK Mohun Bagan began their Super Cup 2023 campaign with an emphatic 5-1 drubbing of local side Gokulam Kerala FC at the EMS Corporation Stadium, here on Monday.
As the home team fans watched in stunned disbelief the ISL champions toyed with their defence with winger Liston Colaco being the star of the show, scoring two early goals that put the Green and Maroon Brigade in a comfortable position within the first 30 minutes itself.
Gokulam Kerala's defensive line was found wanting on multiple occasions, something that Hugo Boumous took advantage of to lodge a goal and an assist to his name. While Manvir Singh scored the remaining goal for ATK Mohun Bagan, Sergio Mendigutxia pulled one back for the Malabarians later in the second half, but by then, the visitors were already in cruise control.
ATK Mohun Bagan FC Coach Juan Ferrando fielded a strong side -- while he rested Australian Dimitrios Petratos, young Kiyan Nassiri received a start upfront.
The Green and Maroon brigade didn't have to wait for long to break Gokulam's defence as they opened the scoring in the seventh minute. Hugo Boumous forced the Gokulam defender Abdul Hakku to commit a mistake, winning the loose ball and passing it on to Liston Colaco. Liston received the ball at the edge of the penalty box and curled it into the far corner to make it 1-0 to the Mariners.
Liston Colaco then added one more goal to his tally to make it 2-0 in the 27th minute. A brilliant move started from the right as Asish Rai switched the ball with a perfectly weighted long ball to Liston. Liston fooled Gokulam's defender Subhankar with his immaculate first touch and then unleashed the ball to the far post leaving Shibinraj with no chance.
Hugo Boumous then got in on the act as he received the ball from Kiyan Nassiri in the middle of the pitch, decided to run inside Gokulam's penalty box and beat Shibinraj to make it 3-0 just before the half time.
Manvir Singh made it 4-0 for the Kolkata giants in the 63rd minute when a pass from Liston Colaco on the left was collected by Boumous. He then passed the ball to Manvir Singh, who was waiting in the box. The India International took a touch away from his marker and smashed the ball into the bottom corner to take the game out of Gokulam's hands.
The Malabarians pulled one back in the second half. Off a free kick, Bouba Aminou provided the ball for Sergio Mendigutxia to head in. ATK Mohun Bagan's Kiyan Nassiri added to Gokulam's miseries by scoring his team's fifth goal of the match moments before the final whistle as he pounced on a failed clearance to make the most of it.
( 481 Words)