INDIAN FOOTBALL

ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC play a draw

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As third and fourth place finishers in their respective groups in the Reliance Foundation presents Premier League Next Generation Cup, ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC play to a scoreless draw.

In today’s final group stage match of the Reliance Foundation presents Premier League Next Generation Cup at Navi Mumbai, ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC drew 0-0 without scoring. After losing to West Ham United and Stellenbosch FC, respectively, in their previous games, both teams entered this contest on a losing streak.

Earlier this month, they had competed against one another in the Reliance Foundation Development League (RFDL) semifinals. Because of their increased acquaintance with one another, both teams played the game against one other cautiously.

Both teams generated lots of chances for goals. Bengaluru came quite close to breaking the scoreless tie in the first half, but the Mariners’ tenacious defending kept the final result unaffected. When Lalrinliana Hnamte of ATK Mohun Bagan and Harmanpreet Singh of the Blues were both dismissed in a sudden turn of events as halftime approached, the strength of both sides was somewhat diminished.

In the second half, both sides entered the pitch with one fewer player than usual, which may have further hindered their potential to score goals. Bengaluru loses the competition without scoring a goal, while the Mariners have a point after three games thanks to their 1-1 tie with West Ham United in their inaugural game of the year.

ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC play to a scoreless draw

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“We wanted to win. The game was good but we had planned for winning, not for the draw. The draw keeps us at the bottom of the table. We didn’t want to draw. But the result has come and we can’t help it,” Bengaluru FC coach Kaizad Ambapardiwalla said after the game. 

“We know each other. We played well. It’s not about knowing each other. It’s about working on our own plans and that is important. Both the teams worked on their part. Both the teams got chances to score but we couldn’t score,” he further added.

“We never anticipated a draw. Always imagined in our minds that we are going to succeed and that we will win the match and we were very close to that today,” ATK Mohun Bagan coach Josep Maria Roma Gibert explained.

“We don’t have to be afraid of anybody. The game is about 11 vs 11. There are 22 legs and it’s nothing different. Somebody can be faster, somebody can jump higher, somebody can be better with the ball but at the end it’s 11 vs 11 and today we proved ourselves that we are more comfortable if we press high,” the Spaniard signed off.

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