ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC are set to battle it out for the honour of being the Indian Super League (ISL) champions for the 2022-23 season. Both teams have fought their way through a lot of adversity this season, but aim to end their campaign on a high note.

Bengaluru FC head into the game on the back of an 11-man winning run. They defeated the league stage champions Mumbai City FC in the semi-finals to get to their third ISL final. The Mariners are back in the ISL final after a two-year gap. They defeated Hyderabad FC in a really tight semi-final.

Two of the most popular clubs in Indian football are set to fight it out at the Fatorda Stadium, Goa, and end their league campaign on a high note.

The Stakes

ATK Mohun Bagan

ATK Mohun Bagan have not won a major trophy in multiple years. For a team that ranks among the higher end of the biggest investments to bolster their squad, that shouldn’t be acceptable. Juan Ferrando was appointed to get the Mariners back to winning trophies and aims to do so on Saturday.

After losing the ISL final to Mumbai City FC in 2021, ATKMB hopes the second time’s the charm for them. But not just that, but this win can also be their ticket back to AFC competitions. The winners of this game will be playing in qualifiers for the AFC Cup participation from India.

The Mariners want to consistently play in Asian competitions and also win trophies, which they can ensure with a win. Despite ATKMB coming off a difficult league campaign, there will be lots of pressure on them to get the job done and bring the ISL trophy back to Kolkata.

Bengaluru FC

Before the turn of 2022, not many would’ve fancied Bengaluru FC to make the ISL playoffs – let alone the final. The Blues were experiencing a really sloppy season under Simon Grayson and not much was working. But then the New Year Gods smiled upon them and reinvigorated the side with new energy.

Bengaluru FC have won 11 games on the trot in 2023. They’re the most in-form side in the league by a huge margin. Those wins also include one over ATKMB at the Salt Lake Stadium. The Blues are roaring and are extremely high on momentum. They need to maintain their momentum and be as resilient as they’ve been in recent games to outwit the Mariners again.

Losing the final after an 11-game winning streak will really sting the Bengaluru FC side. They can’t allow the jitters to get the better of them and need to keep performing at a high level as they’ve been in recent months. The Blues are also craving to add another ISL trophy to their cabinet and script a way back into AFC competitions with this win.

Injury & Team News

ATK Moun Bagan are still sweating on the fitness of Ashique Kuruniyan, who missed the semi-finals due to an injury. Deepak Tangri and Joni Kauko are long-term absentees.

Bengaluru FC welcomed Alan Costa back to the squad and face no injury worries.


ATK Mohun Bagan have faced Bengaluru FC six times in the ISL so far. In that, they’ve won on four occasions as well.

Played – 6

ATK Mohun Bagan – 4

Bengaluru FC – 1

Draw – 1

Watch: ATK Mohun Bagan training session ahead of final

Predicted Lineups

ATK Mohun Bagan (4-2-3-1)

Vishal Kaith (GK), Asish Rai, Pritam Kotal, Slavko Damjanovic, Subhashish Bose, Glan Martins, Carl McHugh, Manvir Singh, Hugo Boumous, Liston Colaco, Dimitri Petratos

Bengaluru FC (5-3-2)

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (GK), Prabir Das, Bruno Ramires, Sandesh Jhingan, Aleksandar Jovanovic, Naorem Roshan Singh, Suresh Wangjam, Rohit Kumar, Javi Hernandez, Roy Krishna, Sivasakthi Narayanan

Player to Watch

Hugo Boumous (ATK Mohun Bagan)

Hugo Boumous has struggled with fitness through the ISL season. He also has the reputation of being a bit of a ‘temperamental’ player. But his qualities cannot be understated. The midfielder is a magnificent player who can thrive under the pressure of big games. He’s scored in major games for ATKMB, including their knockout clash win over Odisha FC as well as the Kolkata derby.

Boumous can create major problems if not neutralized properly and is a livewire in the central areas. He possesses that spark in his game to create chances with his impressive passing ability. Moreover, he can also pop into goal-scoring areas out of nowhere and is clinical with his final product. Unless Bengaluru FC put a lid on him, Boumous can run riot and create major fireworks in his former hunting ground.

Boumous in action against HFC (Credit: ISL Media)

Javi Hernandez (Bengaluru FC)

A major reason behind Bengaluru FC’s grinding wins over the last few months has been midfielder Javi Hernandez. He’s proven himself as a brilliant summer signing and performed at a high level. He’s been the quintessential link between midfield and attack, as well as delivering the goods himself. The 33-year-old has scored seven goals and provided five assists for Bengaluru FC this season, being their most prolific player.

He possesses a major creative threat, especially with his brilliant set-piece ability and clever final third passes. He is energetic, and proactive and can also slip into promising scoring areas, possessing some slick finishing skills too. Hernandez can be the decisive factor for Bengaluru FC if able to dictate the tempo of the game for them – something ATKMB must ensure doesn’t happen.

Javi Hernandez celebrates during the penalty shoot-out against MCFC (Credit: ISL Media)

Did you know?

Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (67) has made the most saves for any goalkeeper in the ISL this season.

ATK Mohun Bagan have kept the joint-most clean sheets (12) in the ISL this season, with Vishal Kaith already winning the Golden Glove award.

Bengaluru FC are on top of the ISL ‘Fairplay Table’ for this season.

Asish Rai (53) has made more interceptions than any other player in the SL this season. Pritam Kotal (45) is just behind him.


The match between ATK Mohun Bagan and Bengaluru FC will take place at the Fatorda Stadium, Goa on March 18 (Saturday). The kick-off time is 7:30 PM IST. The game will telecast live on the Star Sports Network. Disney+HotStar and JioTV will also stream the match.

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