Footy Times

Mumbai City Stage Thrilling Comeback to Clinch ISL Crown

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Mumbai City FC defied a roaring Salt Lake crowd and a spirited Mohun Bagan side to win a thrilling 3-1 comeback victory, clinching their second-ever Indian Super League championship. Jason Cummings’ strike before halftime ignited hopes of a home triumph, but goals from Jorge Pereyra Diaz, Bipin Singh, and Jakub Vojtus secured Mumbai’s stunning resurgence.

The partisan crowd fueled Mohun Bagan’s early dominance, their energy mirroring the intensity on the pitch. Mumbai, known for their possession game, struggled against Bagan’s aggressive press. Yet, despite controlling the flow, Bagan’s chances were limited.

Momentum shifted back to Mumbai City FC, who began dictating play in midfield. However, a miscommunication in defense almost cost them dearly, with Yuste’s handball in the box going unpunished. Lallianzuala Chhangte’s creativity sparked Mumbai’s attack, his pinpoint crosses twice rattling the woodwork. Yet, the visitors seemed destined to head into halftime frustrated and scoreless.

Just when Mumbai’s pressure was suffocating, a moment of brilliance from Bagan’s Liston Colaco invigorated the crowd. His driving run and low shot tested Phurba Lachenpa, creating enough chaos for Cummings to pounce on Dimi Petratos’ deflected follow-up, sending the stadium into a frenzy.

Undeterred, Mumbai launched a swift response after the break. Alberto Noguera’s long ball found Jorge Pereyra Diaz in space, the Argentine’s excellent control and finish silencing the crowd once more. The match became increasingly tense, with nerves mirroring those in the stands as both sides struggled to execute in the final third.

The breakthrough came for Mumbai in the 81st minute. A misplayed clearance fell to Jakub Vojtus, whose off-balance cross deflected kindly for Bipin Singh. The forward, known for his clutch goalscoring, reacted with composure, his scrappy finish handing Mumbai the vital lead.

The match opened up in the dying minutes. Mumbai could have sealed it on a counterattack, but a poor pass squandered the chance. Nevertheless, Vojtus’ close-range finish in injury time put the result beyond doubt, crushing Mohun Bagan’s dream and sparking wild celebrations for the traveling Mumbai supporters.

Mumbai City FC defied the odds, their tactical adjustments and mental resilience proving too much for a valiant Mohun Bagan on their home turf. The 2023-24 ISL trophy belongs to Mumbai, a testament to their undeniable quality and fighting spirit.

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