David Williams on ATK’s contentious penalty: Tell me about Bengaluru’s first goal


The Australian was quick to point that Bengaluru’s first goal was contentious as Nili Perdomo handled the ball in the build-up…

Bengaluru FC missed out on a chance to make it into their third consecutive Indian Super League (ISL) final as they went down 3-1 (3-2 aggregate) to ATK at the Salt Lake Stadium in the second leg of the play-offs.

Ashique Kuruniyan scored his first goal of the season before Roy Krishna equalised in the first half. David Williams scored twice, which included a penalty when he was allegedly brought down inside the box by Suresh Wangjam.

Bengaluru FC coach Carles Cuadrat and owner Parth Jindal opined that the penalty was questionable and that it changed the tide in favour of the home side who were struggling to create openings from open play.

However, Williams was quick to rebuff those suggestions and instead pointed towards Nili Perdomo’s hand-ball in the build-up to Kuruniyan’s goal.

“A lot was going on in my head at that time. It was rush of blood so can’t really comment on that. I have to see it first. Tell me the situation about Bengaluru’s first goal. The build-up was from a hand-ball. It could have hit it and maybe he didn’t mean it but they got an advantage from it. I didn’t mean to handball it but it favoured me in front, so there is a lot of interpretation to it. I felt a contact during the tackle, it was inside the box, the defenders need to careful,” retorted Williams.

The former Wellington Phoenix player stated that they were aware of Bengaluru’s ploy of putting men behind the ball. He also mentioned that it was just a matter of time before they could score against the Blues, who were content to sit in their own half.

“Just be patient and wait for the opportunities was our game. It wasn’t a tactical battle, we knew what to do and we worked hard. We played the last game of the league stage and then the first leg of the play-offs against Bengaluru and so we knew what to do against them. It is a good thing that we played against them the last match and then again in the away game. It was a good rhythm for us.

“I think what got us over was the mental side of it rather than the tactical part. They were always going to be defensive, we had to find something special and I think the crowd was that special thing. We defended really well and were solid at the back. We were building up from the back. It was from the back and it wasn’t Roy (Krishna) or I were creating something out of nothing. We did well as a team and we won the mental battle. This crowd just pushed us over,” said Williams.

Williams hailed his team-mate Prabir Das, who provided two assists and was a constant menace all through the evening for Perdomo and Sunil Chhetri.

“He was unbelievable. He has been good in many games but he didn’t get the recognition. Prabir is doing really well, he follows his instructions carefully. He is one of the most hard working players in the team. He deserved the player of the match award.”

Roy Krishna could have taken his goal scoring tally to 16 had he taken the penalty but chose to let Williams take the spot-kick.

“That is what the game is. You have to make the runs fast and be in the spots to score. I was really desperate to take the penalty and Roy (Krishna) who is the designated penalty taker gave me the chance.”

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