ATK And Blasters Split Points In Garcia's Remarkable Debut

Rohit Ganguly  |  ISL-5  |  2 Months Ago

In a stadium which was graced by visibly low attendance, reading 4582 precisely, Kerala Blasters and ATK shared the spoils of a modestly aggressive encounter. Despite drawing first blood in the dying embers of the regulation time, ATK could not hold on to their lead for long. A mix up in the defence helped Poplantik to restore parity for the hosts.


A sixth-placed ATK seemed to be quieter of the two sides as Kerala fired on all cylinders. Cyril Kali managed to belt out a peach of delivery for an advancing Len but the latter failed to latch on to it at the face of the goal.


Kerala came menacingly close to scoring again but Poplantink’s stooping header was palmed away by an alert Arindam.


After the change of sides, ATK did manage to claw their way back into the game slowly but never really looked like the better squad to beat a languishing Kerala Blasters in their own backyard.


Tables turned when ATK won a foul at the edge of the box as Ruatthara clipped a surging Garcia. Edu Garcia stepped up for the set-piece and drilled the ball into the bottom corner of the net past a diving Dheeraj Singh.


Just when it was heading into another disappointing night for the sparsely present home fans, Poplantik muscled his way past a cumbersome Gerson to restore order for the hosts. It was Cyril Kali’s cross which was headed towards a stranded Gerson and the Brazilian defender deflected the ball into his own net.


This result will be least conducive to both the teams' cause as with only 5 matches to go, neither ATK nor Kerala moved any closer to the top four. With Kerala already 7 points adrift of the fourth-placed North East United, ATK managed 17 points in their kitty.


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