ATK Mohun Bagan made it to the knockout stage of the AFC Cup 2021 on Tuesday after they managed a 1-1 draw against Group D competitors Bashundhara Kings in Male, Maldives. ATK Mohun Bagan scored in the second half to cancel out the goal from Bashundhara to earn themselves a draw and a spot in the knockouts. ATKMB needed a win or a draw against Bashundhara to go through while the Bangladeshi outfit needed a win.
Bashundhara put ATKMB under a lot of pressure in the first half and Jonathan da Silveira Fernandes gave them the lead in the 28th minute. However, the game changed with Bashundhara going a man down in the stoppage time of the first half when Sushanto Tripura was shown a red card.
Having had to play the whole of the second half with a man less against ATK Mohun Bagan proved to be a handicap as ATKMB’s Williams made the best of it and scored.
However, Bashundhara did not stop trying till the last moments and ATKMB could not put up a performance to remember as they failed to get a win against a 10-man Bashundhara Kings.
ATK Mohun Bagan will be up against the club that win the final of Central Asia Zone. The final is between Uzbekistan’s Nasaf and Turkmenistan’s Ahal.
ATK Mohun Bagan helped India keep the AFC Cup group stage slot too as had they failed to qualify for the knockouts, the country would have lost the spot.