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ISL 2018-19: ATK 1-3 Mumbai City FC – 5 talking points as Sougou’s hat-trick sends Mumbai into knock-outs

Avik Roy
Top 5 / Top 10
22 Feb 2019, 23:51 IST

Mumbai booked the ticket for playoffs
Mumbai booked the ticket for playoffs

Mumbai City FC, coming after hattrick of losses which almost derailed their campaign, finally booked their place in the knock-outs with a brilliant 3-1 win against ATK at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on Friday.

Senegalese striker Modou Sougou, who has been in a brilliant form this season, scored a scintillating hat-trick, his second of the tournament, to end all hopes for the home side. ATK got a consolation goal from Andre Bikey but that was far from enough to keep them alive in the tournament.

Mumbai City, with 30 points from 17 matches, will face FC Pune City in the Maharashtra Derby in their next match. ATK, who have 21 points from 17 matches, will host Delhi Dynamos in their last match which will turn out to be a formality for both the teams.

With his hattrick, Sougou took his tally to 12 goals to move to third position, only behind Ferran Corominas of FC Goa and Bartholomew Ogbeche of NorthEast United FC.

Let us look at the talking points of the game.

#5 Coppell’s gamble to play Kalu Uche failed completely

Before facing Mumbai City FC, ATK coach Steve Coppell said the team management made certain plan before the start of the season keeping Kalu Uche in mind. However, the move didn’t pay off as Uche never came close to his best which he was in the last season. Contrasting to the 13 goals that he scored last edition for Delhi Dynamos, Uche has only one goal this season out of 10 matches.

On Friday, he looked like an ordinary player who just learned to play is yet to know the basics of the game. He was too sloppy to play in the role of a striker. There wasn’t any understanding between him and other teammates, especially with Edu Garcia. The Spaniard at least twice provided good balls to Uche but in both time the Nigerian was out of position.

With Manuel Lanzarote injured, Coppell had no other option except fielding Uche. In the second half, the Nigerian missed two excellent sitters, much to the disbelief of British coach. The striker has only shot on target to his name.

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