Bambolim (Goa), Feb 28 (IANS) Mumbai City beat ATK Mohun Bagan 2-0 on Sunday to win Indian Super League’s (ISL) League Winners’ Shield and secure a place in the 2022 AFC Champions League. It is only the third time this season that Bagan have failed to score with their last blank also coming against Mumbai.
Mumbai were trailing Bagan by three points at the start of the match, needing nothing less than a win to secure the top spot. Mourtada Fall (7th minute) and Bartholomew Ogbeche (39th minute) scored in the first half after which Mumbai put up a solid defensive performance to keep out Bagan.
Being the team with the most goals from set-pieces this season, Mumbai drew first blood in a similar fashion, scoring with their first shot on target. Ahmed Jahouh’s free-kick fell to an unmarked Fall, who buried his header from an acute angle across the face of goal to put Mumbai ahead.
The Mariners took control of the game soon after conceding but were forced to make a substitution in the 19th minute with Prabir Das replacing the injured Sandesh Jinghan.
Chances were far and few in between after the opening goal but it was from another set-piece that Mumbai doubled their advantage. Hernan Santana’s free-kick rattled the underside of the crossbar and Ogbeche pounced on the rebound, heading into an empty net.
Mumbai started the second-half bright, piling pressure on the Bagan defence. The Mariners, on the other hand, hardly tested Mumbai keeper Amrinder Singh despite dominating possession after the break.
The crossbar proved unlucky for Bagan again, denying Prabir a goal around the hour mark. The substitute lined up a shot from distance that beat Mumbai keeper Amrinder but the ball fizzled out after striking the frame.
Antonio Lopez Habas’s side went all out in the closing stages of the game, hoping to script a comeback but Mumbai’s backline stood firm, defending in numbers.