ATK Mohun Bagan secured a spot in the AFC Cup 2022 main round with a 3-1 win over Abahani Limited Dhaka on Tuesday at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, thanks to a hat-trick from Australian forward David Williams. Daniel Colindres scored the lone goal for the visitors in the 61st minute.
The Juan Ferrando-coached Indian Super League (ISL) team will compete in Group D of the AFC Cup main round against I-League champions Gokulam Kerala, Bashundhara Kings (Bangladesh), and Maziya Sports and Recreation (Maldives).
ATK Mohun Bagan began the game boldly against Abahani Limited Dhaka, the six-time Bangladesh Premier League champions, and was rewarded with their first goal attempt. The home team took the lead after David Williams converted a superb cross from Joni Kauko.
ATK Mohun Bagan continued to dominate the ball, and nine minutes later, Prabir Das sent up David Williams, who increased his team's lead. The Australian forward had a chance to make it three early in the first half, but Abahani Dhaka goalkeeper Shahidul Alam stopped his attempt.
Abahani did generate a few chances, but the home side's domination in the midfield ensured that ATK Mohun Bagan went into the first half with a clean slate.
Throughout the first 15 minutes of the second half, both teams played end-to-end.
Abahani Limited Dhaka's repeated incursions in ATK Mohun Bagan's half paid off in the 61st minute when Daniel Colindres scored from beyond the box to put the visitors back in the game.
Six minutes later, Abahani Limited Dhaka appeared to have equalized, but Juwel Rana fired wide and ATKMB avoided a big scare. However, in the 85th minute, David Williams found himself through on goal and maintained his cool to convert the opportunity and complete his hat-trick. On May 18, ATK Mohun Bagan will face Gokulam Kerala in their AFC Cup Group D opener.