At the Nehru Stadium, the Shillong outfit rallied to beat Mumbai
Football Club 2-1.
For Lajong, city’s Nehru Stadium again proved to be lucky and as expected they won the match convincingly displaying a better brand of the game. It was a truly entertaining encounter as the pace of the match was reasonably good throughout the course. Players of both the teams were on their toes from the word go and initiated several attacks and counterattacks.
Initially, the Mumbai team was better in exchanging the ball and forced their Shillong counterparts to fall back. Mumbai defender Kingsley Chioma took his team ahead in the 38th minute with a beautiful header off a corner kick taken by Nicholas Rodrigues (1-0). They could have taken a 2-0 advantage just before the break had Gbeneme Friday not missed from an one-on-one situation with Shillong goalkeeper Soram Poirei Anganba.
But the complexion of the match changed in the second session as the Shillong boys came up with some well planned moves. Their midfielder and skipper John D Mgnyongar was instrumental in initiating their attacks with some eye-catching ball play. Lajong restored parity in the 55th minute through PC Lallhlimthara who headed home off a floater sent by Wailadmi Passah (1-1).
The architect of the goal was John, who receiving a short corner sent the ball to Wailadmi. After getting the equalizer, the Shillong players went for the win. They got the result in the 74th minute when Eugeneson Lyngdoh fired home from top of the box (2-1). Mumbai front liner Gbeneme Friday toiled a lot in search of a goal but his solo efforts were foiled by ever-alert Shillong defenders. Mumbai defender Kingsley was given marching order in the 63rd minute being cautioned twice. Lajong forward Eugengson Lyngdoh was named the best player of the final.
With today’s victory, Lajong jumped to the seventh position in the 14-team I-League with 12 points in their kitty. On the other hand, Mumbai FC is at 11th place with seven points. Both the teams have played nine matches each.