After losing their opening game in the tournament, ATK Mohun Bagan won their first match of the AFC Cup 2022 on Saturday, defeating Bangladeshi team Bashundhara Kings 4-0 at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata. Last week, the Indian Super League (ISL) team lost their first match to Gokulam Kerala.
ATKMB's Liston Colaco scored a hat-trick (24', 33', 53'), while David Williams (77') scored the other goal. Juan Ferrando made four adjustments to the lineup he began versus Gokulam, with Sandesh Jhingan returning to the starting lineup. After Chinedu dispossessed Carl McHugh at the ATKMB box and gave it to Miguel Figueira Damasceno near the outside of the box, Bashundhara Kings threatened to score early. The Brazilian fired his shot, but it missed the mark.
Due to inclement weather in Kolkata, the action was soon halted for a good 50 minutes. When the game resumed, the Bashundhara Kings appeared to be the more likely team to score. Around the 18-minute mark, Robinho struck the far post with a free-kick, then ATKMB goalkeeper Arsh Anwar deflected a stunning Rimon Hossain volley from long-range onto the woodwork.
The ball came back within the ATKMB box, but Jhingan did a good job of catching it. The wasted opportunities would come back to haunt the Bashundhara Kings, as Liston Colaco scored two goals in a row to put ATKMB up 2-0. The opener came as a result of a defensive blunder by Bashundhara Kings' veteran defender Bishwanath Ghosh. Around the 24-minute mark, Colaco capitalized on Ghosh's botched clearance and placed it past Kings goalkeeper Anisur to open the score.
After grabbing onto a through ball from Joni Kauko, who twisted his man beautifully before threading it through, the winger increased his team's advantage nine minutes later. Colaco made no errors, rounding the goalie for a 2-0 lead. The result in the first half was 2-0 in favor of the Indian club.
Oscar Bruzon's Bashundhara Kings hurled precaution to the wind in the second half in pursuit of a goal that would bring them back into the game. Arsh Anwar, on the other hand, kept ATKMB's lead with some excellent saves. Colaco scored the third goal for Kolkata in the 53rd minute to make it 3-0. Manvir Singh took advantage of another Bashundhara Kings defensive blunder and supplied Colaco, who easily tallied his hat-trick goal from close range.
Manvir Singh provided the last goal of the game in the 77th minute, setting up second-half replacement David Williams for ATKMB's fourth goal of the game. With three points after two games, ATKMB has climbed to the top of Group D. Gokulam is in second place with three points from one game and will face Maziya later today. The victor of each group advances to the Interzone semi-finals.