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ATK Mohun Bagan v Kerala Blasters

ISL: Poor shot conversion! Can Kerala Blasters score against ATK Mohun Bagan?

12:15 GMT+3 19/11/2021
Chencho Gyeltshen
The Men in Yellow have not been the best goalscorers in the last few season...

Kerala Blasters will have their task cut out when they take on one of the pre-season favourites in ATK Mohun Bagan in the Indian Super League (ISL) opener on Friday evening at the Fatorda Stadium in Goa.

They had a disappointing outing in the last season where they finished tenth in the league table. They failed to win in their last eight ISL matches and as a result, coach Kibu Vicuna was shown the door at the end of the season. A new coach in Ivan Vukomanovic has been brought on board and his first task is to guide Blasters to three points against the Mariners. And to win matches, you need to score goals.

Poor shot-conversion

Kerala Blasters struggled to score in the 2020-21 season in spite of having their fair share of attempts on goal. In fact, they had the second-poorest shot conversion rate (11.7%), with just 23 of their 196 shots resulting in goals. However, they have made wholesale changes to their squad this time around and have put together a brand new attacking unit which consists of Alvaro Vasquez, Jorge Diaz, and a familiar face in Chencho Gyeltshen.

Leaky Defence

Blasters were equally porous at the back in the previous season, letting in 36 goals. That was their worst tally in a single campaign so far. As a result, they have roped in Enes Sipovic and Croatian Marko Leskovic to reinforce their backline and it remains to be seen how it holds up against the likes of Roy Krishna and Hugo Boumous.

A few interesting stats about the two teams

  1. ATK Mohun Bagan scored 82 per cent of their goals in the second half of the regular season during their 2020/21 ISL campaign, the best rate amongst all teams; they found the back of the net 23 times during that period.
  2. Since 2015, no player has saved more penalties in a single season of the ISL than Kerala Blasters FC keeper Albino Gomes; he saved three last season.
  3. ATK Mohun Bagan were the team with the best differential between expected goals (23.37) and actual goals scored (32) in the 2020/21 ISL campaign (+8.63 xG value).
  4. ATK Mohun Bagan scored 82% of their goals in the second half of the regular season during their 2020/21 ISL campaign, the best rate amongst all teams; they found the back of the net 23 times during that period.

(Stat Courtesy: Opta Jeev)