Photo Credit: ISL Media Twitter
ISL: ATKMB share spoils with Chennaiyin.
Chennaiyin FC and ATK Mohun Bagan played out a goalless draw.
ATK Mohun Bagan played out a goalless draw against Chennaiyin FC on Tuesday night at the GMC Bambolim Athletic Stadium in Goa.
ATKMB were on attack from the start and got a corner in the first minute of the match itself. Edu Garcia sent in a decent cross but Manvir Singh's header went out of play.
The Machans had two chances in the next few minutes. First one came at the fourth minute when Rafael Crivellaro managed to get inside the box to take a shot but his effort went straight to custodian Arindam Bhattacharja.
In the seventh minute Crivellaro dished out a pass to Lallianzuala Chhangte but the winger's powerful shot was away from the target.
The Mariners won a free-kick in the 10th minute but Edu Garcia's cross to Roy Krishna was intercepted by Eli Sabia.
In the 20th minute, Chennaiyin survived a scare when Roy Krishna was close to the goal where he won the ball but he was adjudged offside.
It was a neck to neck game where both sides had their chances but none of them had the cutting edge to finish the game.
Chennaiyin had a chance to open their account when Crivellaro went for the goal directly following a corner but his shot went over the crossbar. The scoreline remained goalless at the break.
In the second half the first big chance fell to Chennaiyin as Chhangte was denied a goal by an onrushing Arindam Bhattacharja who dived to his left to make a save. Four minutes later he made another save from Memo Moura's long distance effort but this time it was an easy collection for the shot stopper.
The custodian had a busy night as he was once again to the rescue in the 65th minute when a free-kick from Memo threatened the goal.
Both the teams tried hard to look for the winner but none of the two sides could get the better of the counterparts' defence, as the scoreline remained intact at the blow of the full-time whistle.
Chennaiyin FC head coach Csaba Laszlo said after the match, "I just watched the statistics and we had more ball possession and seven shots on target but we didn't score. But I think I should be happy with my team's performance and they were playing after two days against a great team. Must compliment ATKMB as well as it was a good football game and fans must have enjoyed. We could have finished the year with a victory but if the goalkeeper from the opposition gets the best player it tells the story. But tactically, it was a great game from my team and they understood what I wanted. It was more European tactically than Indian.
"Sometimes you see two teams playing like this, you can be satisfied with the football. The way one keeps the ball, how one has to move with the partner, all of that was important today. I must be fair, a draw was more or less a real result.
"Our training centre is not very modern but I am putting a lot of lines. If the ball is in the opposition's half, how we have to move in the defence. I make the pitch very tight. Even if we lose the ball, we played two systems today, we played 4-2-4 and then 4-2-3-1 and 4-3-3 and I told Sylvestr to not waste too much time. I told in the second half that if we leave ATKMB to come and we have to manage the game to our strengths. The shoot from Chhangte was really what we did in training. You have to cover many spaces, and young Indian players understand how important it is. I tell them 'don't shoot out, pass and wait'. That was more or less our tactic and nearly led us to victory but we got just a point."
ATKMB head coach Antonio Lopez Habas was satisfied with the point but wasn't pleased with the performance, "Happy with the point but our performance is not good and the best chance was to draw the match. I am not happy with the performance today.
"I think Chennaiyin had a good match and we had a few chances. I am happy with the effort of my team today but not with the performance. I understand it is not possible to play good all the time but we need to do better."
"When you can't win, it's better not to lose, it's clear. Sometimes teams play fantastic but don't win. And this was the match today."