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ISL 2020 Final, Match Highlights, ATK vs Chennaiyin FC: Javi Hernandez scores in added time to seal victory for ATK

Get all the latest updates as Firstpost.com covers the final of the Indian Super League, contested by Chennaiyin FC and ATK.

FP Sports March 14, 2020 18:38:42 IST
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ISL 2020 Final, Match Highlights, ATK vs Chennaiyin FC: Javi Hernandez scores in added time to seal victory for ATK

Highlights

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Mar 14, 2020 - 22:06 (IST)

That's it from us folks!

What an Indian Super League season we've had. It's been exciting, it's been unpredictable and it's been entertaining. There's been no shortage of excellent players, from Hugo Boumous to Lucian Goian, Roy Krishna to Ahmed Jahouh and Gurpreet Singh Sandhu to Nerijus Valskis. We've seen goals, we've seen clean sheets and we've seen a whole lot of good football.

With next year already looking like it could be just as good, if not better, Indian football really does feel like it's in the ascendency at the moment. It's been an honour to bring you tonight's action, and if you enjoyed reading our work, make sure to tune back in regularly, because we'll be right here, bringing you all the latest updates from the world of sports. Until the next time our paths cross, good bye and goodnight. 

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:43 (IST)

Lucian Goian speaks after the match: 

After all, we had a great season, considering how we started it. We're feeling really bad we couldn't win it.

Arindam made so many amazing saves. This is football, we made some great chances, but we couldn't do it. This was not easy, it was a difficult season, we lived out of hotels, we were away from our families, only to falter at the final hurdle.

But we can be proud of ourselves for having a good season and making it to the final. Maybe next season we'll do it

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:42 (IST)

Nerijus Valskis speaks after the match: 

Both teams deserved to win, but only one can no? I want to congratulate ATK for their performance, they did very well.

We had two great chances in the first few minutes, and if we had scored them, we could have won this. I tried my best, I really did, but I couldn't do it.

I'm happy Roy Krishna scored in the playoffs, he's a great guy.

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:41 (IST)

Prabir Das speaks after the match: 

It's a huge achievement for me. Last year I had an injury, I went out to get treated for it and I want to thank ATK, who believed in me and helped me get where I am. I am so happy I got to play this season, I'm so happy I won again with ATK.

When I got my injury, I was so upset, but I worked as hard as I could and now I'm a champion. It's unbelievable. 

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:40 (IST)

Pronay Halder speaks after the match: 

I feel really great, winning it for the second time with ATK. It was amazing. 

The way Chennaiyin came up in the last part of the season was great, it was difficult to beat them. This season was one of the toughest I've played, all the teams were great, FC Goa, CFC and BFC too.

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:38 (IST)

Roy Krishna speaks after the match: 

Unbelievable. The boys deserved it, this week was just about touching the trophy. Unfortunately, I could not be part of the final, but they did so well.

I also just want to say thank you to all the fans, who couldn't show up tonight.

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:37 (IST)

David Williams speaks after the match:

I need a corona, hold the virus though.

It was an interesting game, and I really enjoyed it. We created history tonight, it was special.

It was very difficult to get motivated for this, you need to get outside motivation. It was a really good game from both sides.

We needed to be a little braver, and we were.

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:31 (IST)

FT | ATK 3 - 1 CFC

And it's ATK who are now the most successful side in Indian Super League history, having picked up their third title in six years. It's been an impressive season for them, and they've worked really hard to get here.

Chennaiyin FC were the perfect underdog story, coming from absolutely nowhere to qualify for the playoffs, beating favourites FC Goa, and their incredible journey has finally come to an end. In many ways, this is a victory for them as well, and they should take heart in it. Owen Coyle has a good team, and next season, they could be a real force to reckon with. 

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:25 (IST)

94' | ATK 3 - 1 CFC

Game Over. Javi Hernandez scores. After being put through on goal thanks to a delightful Pronay Halder assist, the Spaniard rounds the keeper, holds off two defenders and slips the ball into the gaping net. It's an excellent goal, and the better side on the night find themselves two goals up. 

Mar 14, 2020 - 21:23 (IST)

91' | ATK 2 - 1 CFC

Four minutes of added time to play. It's a bit longer than you'd expect, but it's not long enough for Chennaiyin FC. Anyway, Arindam Bhattacharja has gone down injured, after a coming-together with Nerijus Valskis. This is just adding on to the injury time, but it is also taking away Chennaiyin's momentum. 

Preview: ATK and Chennaiyin FC will seek a hat-trick of ISL titles on Saturday when they meet in the 6th edition's final, which will be played without spectators owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Though for a different reason, this is the second time that an ISL match will be played in an empty stadium after the league stage game between NorthEast United FC and Bengaluru FC was held behind closed doors in Guwahati in the wake of the protest against the Citizenship Amendment Act in Assam.

The season has been a landmark one in many ways. While it has produced high-quality football, the sport's governing body AIFF has granted ISL the top-tier domestic competition status.

The league phase winners of the ISL, FC Goa will become the first Indian side to directly play in the group stage of the AFC Champions League, the top club league of Asia.

ATK (2014 and 2016) and Chennaiyin (2015 and 2017-18) have both won the ISL twice already and are looking to become the first side to win it three times.

But, in an anti-climax of sorts, there will be no spectators to witness the historic moment as the final will be played in front of an empty stadium. This is in line with a sports ministry directive to all national federations to follow the health ministry's advisory and avoid large gatherings in sports events.

The two teams were brilliant in the play-offs with Chennaiyin getting the better of FC Goa in a thrilling two-legged tie that finished 6-5 on aggregates, while ATK produced a second leg turnaround to send defending champions Bengaluru FC packing with a 3-2 win on aggregate.

This is the first time that these two clubs are meeting each other in the final. Interestingly, neither club has lost an ISL final — a run that will end for one of them on Saturday.

The two sides are also on equal footing this season. In the league stages, ATK defeated Chennaiyin in Chennai before the team from the south returned the favour in Kolkata.

While ATK have been one of the most consistent sides this season, Chennaiyin were left to produce a miracle to reach this stage after Owen Coyle took charge of them at the start of last December.

In the six matches before his arrival, Chennaiyin had won only once and scored just four goals. Since he took charge, Chennaiyin went on to win eight matches, a tally bettered only by FC Goa.

Now Coyle is a win away from completing a miracle. Key to this turnaround has been the form of Chennaiyin's attack that has produced goals whenever necessary.

Nerijus Valskis has 14 goals to his name and is fighting for the top scorer award, while Rafael Crivellaro is the creative engine of the team.

The partnership between the two has blossomed under Coyle. Winger Lallianzuala Chhangte has also been brilliant and has scored in their last three games, becoming the first Indian to score in both the legs of a play-off tie.

"I have nothing but the utmost respect for ATK, for the quality of players they have. We will stick to our style because we believe we can win games with it. We are still under pressure as we go into the final and we want to be because that's when we are at our best," said Coyle.

ATK, on the other hand, rely on Roy Krishna and David Williams' contributions in attack. Krishna, with 15 goals this season, is also firmly in the race for the Golden Boot.

But equally dangerous is Williams who scored a brace against Bengaluru in the play-off. While the likes of Edu Garcia and Javier Hernandez provide supply from the middle, wing-back Prabir Das is a crucial attacking outlet for the Kolkata-based side.

"We have to enjoy the final and try to win it. But we have to respect the opponent. There is only one final. We need one heart and the whole mind for the final," said coach Antonio Habas who led ATK to the title back in 2014.

For the full Indian Super League schedule, click here

For all the results from this Indian Super League season, click here

For the Indian Super League points table, click here

Content courtesy: PTI

Updated Date:

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