AFC Cup: Mohun Bagan SG beat Machhindra FC

Kolkata, Aug 16 (UNI) Mohun Bagan Super Giant produced a dominant performance as they beat Nepal side Machhindra FC 3-1 in their AFC Cup 2023 preliminary round two clash at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan here on Wednesday.

New signings Anwar Ali (40’, 86’) and Jason Cummings (59’) scored for the Mariners while Afeez Oladipo (78’) found the back of the net for Machhindra FC.

Mohun Bagan SG started the game on a promising note, but were denied by Machhindra FC keeper and captain Bishal Sreshtha. The custodian saved two shots from midfielder Sahal Abdul Samad inside 30 minutes to keep the scoreline goalless.

However, it didn’t take the hosts too long to score the opener, which came from a set piece. Hugo Boumous’ delivery from a corner found Anwar Ali, who headed past the keeper to score his first goal for the Mariners.

Mohun Bagan SG almost had another goal before the half-time break, but Ashique Kuruniyan’s effort found the wrong side of the net.

The hosts continued to dominate the game after the break, putting pressure on the opposition besides hogging majority of the possession. They were rewarded for their efforts with Cummings getting on the scoresheet. Anirudh Thapa set up the Australian forward, who scored with a precise finish.

Machhindra FC soon pulled one back through a free-kick. Nigerian forward Oladipo beat the wall and the keeper to make it 2-1 for the Nepal side.

However, their hopes of getting anything out of the contest were soon quashed as Ali bagged another goal towards the death. Mohun Bagan SG won a free-kick and substitute Petratos delivered a teasing delivery into the box. Ali once again popped up with a header to restore the Mariners’ two-goal advantage.

Mohun Bagan SG will next face Bangladesh’s Abahani Dhaka in the AFC Cup south zone playoff clash on August 22.

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