Mumbai City FC suffered their second straight defeat in Group D of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Champions League 2023-24 as they went down 0-3 to Uzbekistans Navabhor Namagan FC at the Marzakiy Stadion in Namangan, Uzbekistan on Tuesday.
A strong second-half show from the hosts that saw them score all their goals in the second 45 minutes took them temporarily to the top of Group D while the Islanders remained bottom.
All domestic players, Jamshid Iskandarov (52), Jasur Yakshiboev (58) and Doniyor Abdumannopov (88), were on target for Navabhor as they remained unbeaten in Group D.
Vikram Partap Singh who had provided the assist for Jorge Pereyra Diazs equaliser in the Indian Super League (ISL) match against Odisha FC started the game and was the brightest player for the Islanders as his pace and trickery caused the hosts plenty of problems.
Mumbai City FC grew into the game as the half progressed and had a golden chance to take the lead through the penalty spot but Greg Stewart missed his kick and the home side got off the hook.
The two teams went into the break level but with Mumbai City FC enjoyed a lions share of possession.
Navabhor came out all guns blazing in the second half and it took them just seven minutes to break the deadlock. Iskanderov unleashed a powerful left-footed drive from outside the box that flew into the corner giving Phurba Lachenpa no chance.
The Uzbekistan side then opened up Mumbai City FC again before they could settle from the first blow Yakshiboev finished off a well-constructed move to double the home sides lead.
Des Buckingham brought on Abdenasser El Khayati and Bipin Singh to rescue the game and the former almost made an impact when he released Akash Mishra whose cross just evaded Diaz in the box with fifteen minutes to play.
But as the Islanders pushed to get back in the game, Navabhor killed the game with a third goal when Abdumannopov drilled his effort into the bottom corner in the 88th minute to seal the victory for the home side.
Mumbai City FC now face Saudi Arabias Al Hilal in Riyadh in their next AFC Champions League match on October 23. (ANI)