Aizawl hold Salgaocar 1-1 in I-League
Salgaocar managed to get their first point of the season being held 1-1 by Aizawl FC in an I-League encounter at the Tilak Maidan here on Sunday.
Scottish striker Darryl Duffy (44th minute) put Salgaocar ahead just before halftime. But midfielder Robert Malsawmtluanga (90+1) converted a penalty for Aizawl to give the I-League newcomers a hard-fought point. Salgaocar thus managed to climb up a spot to the eight place in the nine-team points table while Aizawl are at seventh.
There were chances for both sides in the opening few minutes, but neither could take advantage. Around the 19th minute mark, Duffy played out a brilliant move with midfielder Jakichand Singh after which the latter found himself in acres of space and only the Aizawl custodian Soram Anganba to beat. But Anganba pulled off a good save.
The visitors kept attacking, but were repeatedly foiled by the Salgaocar defenders. In the 42nd minute, Fanai Lalrinpuia almost gave them the lead with a 30-yard screamer, but his shot whizzed narrowly past the post.
However, it was Duffy who got onto the scoresheet at the other end two minutes later as he latched onto a long ball and placed it past Soram to find his third goal of the season.
After the restart, it was Aizawl who tried to press on the accelerator. They had a few more chances, but wasted them with their poor execution. When it looked like Salgaocar would finally have their first win of the season, Reagan Singh brought down Alfred Jaryan inside the visitors’ box to give away a penalty. Malsawmtluanga stepped up and calmly sent it past the Salgaocar keeper to level the score.
Shillong Lajong FC jumped a place to the fifth spot after beating Sporting Clube de Goa 1-0 in an I-League football home match in Shillong. Brazilian striker Uilliams Bomfim scored the game-clinching goal in the 59th minute to give the home side its first ever victory against the Goan side. He was adjudged the Man of the Match.
Lajong now has seven points from four matches, eclipsing Sporting which has four points after similar number of matches, dropping them a place in the standings. It was a golden opportunity for Sporting and it were unable to create another meaningful opportunity in the fist half, which ended 0-0. Sporting were again on the charge after the break, creating a couple of genuine opportunities in the space of three minutes. Lajong made Sporting pay dearly for its profligacy and went ahead just at the stroke of the hour mark.
Uilliams scored after a co-ordinating beautifully with Faio Pena upfront.