Aizawl FC 1-1 Bengaluru FC : Exhilarating Encounter Finishes In A Draw
Aizawl FC and Bengaluru FC played out an entertaining 1-1 draw in the 9th Round of the 2016/17 I-League at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium, in Aizawl on Wednesday…
Aizawl FC made two changes to the side that made light work of Churchill Brothers in the previous game. Lalruatthara and Mahmoud Amnah came in for Laltanpuia and Lalmuankima. The away side meanwhile made a solitary change, with top scorer CK Vineeth making way for young Daniel Lalhlimpuia.
The Blues started to get at the home side from the onset, with Daniel's cross in the second minute begging for a tap in. They came even closer when Sunil Chhetri's free-kick fizzed just over the crossbar. Aizawl tried to claw back into the game, with Jayesh Rane's attempted punt at the goal blocked by Eugeneson Lyngdoh in the box. Khalid Jamil's side kept probing with continued attacks, and almost broke the deadlock from Amnah's header on the half hour mark. The resulting clearance landed in Alfred Jaryan's feet, who let fly from yards out. Amrinder Singh parried away the shot to keep the scoreline 0-0. But the Blues' resistance soon broke. Ashutosh Mehta, who had been a constant outlet down the right-wing for Aizawl, was found by an Amnah through ball. The right-back sent in a low telling cross for Brandon for a simple tap-in. The teams looked to be heading into the dressing room with a 1-0 scoreline, but Sunil Chhetri, who looked Bengaluru's only player likely to score, had other plans. Out of nowhere, the skipped unleashed a half-volley from outside the box which rocketed past a diving Albino Gomes.
The Blues, pumped with the equaliser, came out as the better team, and kept knocking on the Aizawl door for a second. Harmanjot Khabra's clipped ball into the box found Chhetri, who's powerful header was put behind by Gomes. Minutes later, Gomes pulled off another heroic save. Lalruatthara was guilty of bringing down Sandesh Jhingan in the box, resulting into a penalty for the away side. Chhetri stepped up to take the spot kick, but Gomes guessed it right to deny the India captain. The Blues had the ball in the net minutes later, but Sandesh Jhingan's effort was ruled out as the referee spotted Daniel impeding Gomes. Aizawl, who's were anonymous in the second half, had a chance to race into the lead through Alfred Jaryan. Jayesh Rane's left wing cross was excellently brought down on a plate for the Aizawl captain, who could nit finish from yards out. At the other end, the Blues failed to convert yet another opportunity, as substitute Seiminlen Doungel's free header resulting from some excellent work down the left by Mandar Rao Dessai was too tame.
This proved to be the last opportunity of the game as Aizawl managed to frustrate and hold Roca's side for a 1-1 draw.
Hero Of The Match: Albino Gomes
Feverpitch's Man Of The Match: Albino Gomes.