Mumbai City FC end ISL season on a high

Mumbai City FC left it late to defeat Atletico de Kolkata 3-2 and register their first ever away win in the Hero Indian Super League in the two seasons.

In a match where fortunes kept fluctuating in Kolkata on Friday, Mumbai City FC took the lead twice through goals from Sony Norde (26th minute) and Sunil Chhetri (82nd) but the defending champions restored parity with goals from Iain Hume (45th) and Izumi Arata (90th). Just when it looked like Mumbai City would have to wait till the third edition to register their first away win, Sony Norde scored the winner in the third minute of added time.

The win took Mumbai City FC to the sixth spot with 16 points while Atletico de Kolkata are at the top of the league ladder with 23 points. Both teams have completed their league engagements.

Mumbai City had an early chance with Sunil Chhetri involved but Kolkata defender Augustine Fernandes at first thwarted the attempt and then the goalkeeper Calatayud was on hand to keep the slate clean.

Atletico de Kolkata launched a counter-attack in the ninth minute but Hume’s attempt missed the target by a whisker. There was another chance in the 16th minute when Jaime Gavilan played a ball over the Mumbai defence which saw Samegh Doutie in the clear but the South African chose to go for glory himself and missed, when passing the ball to an unmarked Hume would have been a better option.

Mumbai City took the lead in the 26th minute through Sony Norde. The Haitian midfielder played a ball to Selim Benachour which he controlled well and then split the defence to play it back for Norde who turned and dispatched the ball past Mumbai goalkeeper Subrata Paul.

Kolkata could equalise only at the stroke of half time when Mohammad Rafique won a penalty. Rafique was trying to find an opening inside the danger zone when he tumbled after being fouled by Pratesh Shirodkar and the referee awarded a penalty. Hume stepped up and converted to draw his team level at half time.

In the second session, Mumbai City were themselves awarded a penalty in the 81st penalty when Tiri was adjudged to have brought down Aguilera inside the box. Sunil Chhetri assumed responsibility of the resultant penalty and converted with ease to give his team the lead.

Kolkata, however, drew level for the second time as they found the mark in the 90th minute. A long ball from the centre saw Arata bring it down and then hammer in an unstoppable left-footer past Subrata Paul.

It seemed Mumbai City were being denied of an away win again until Norde and Benachour combined again to notch the match-winner with only seconds left on the clock.

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