DSK Shivajians 0-1 Aizawl FC: Aizawl Regain Pole Position
Aizawl FC continued their fairytale run in the I-League as they edged out DSK Shivajians 0-1 in a crucial away encounter at the Shree Chhatrapati Balewadi Sports Complex, in Pune on Tuesday.
Laldanmawia scored late in the 85th minute to catapult themselves to the top of the table, 2 points clear of East Bengal.
Going into the match, DSK gaffer Dave Rogers made as many as four changes to his squad that eked out a draw against Chennai in their last game. Sasa Kolunija, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Halicharan Narzary and Milan Singh returned to the playing XI.
Aizawl gaffer, Khalid Jamil refused to tinker with the Aizawl team that beat Mumbai FC in their last home game.
Both teams started the match cautiously, with Aizawl having a slight edge over their opposition.
However, it was DSK's Seityasen Singh who tested the Aizawl keeper with a lethal header in the 10th minute of the match but much to the relief of the travelling Aizawl fans, Albino thwarted the ball away for a corner.
DSK's Paite missed a glaring opportunity in the 33rd minute when he failed to tap the ball into an open net, after being brilliantly set up by Juan Quero.
The scoreline remained goalless at the end of the first half.
Aizawl started the second half brightly but could not trouble the scoreline, owing to some brilliant defending from DSK's Kolunija.
Just when it seemed that the match would finish in a stalemate, Aizawl's pocket sized dynamite Laldanmawia stepped up. Second half substitute Lalmuan Kima skipped past Nirmal Chhetri to lay the ball on a platter for Danmawia, who made no mistake in calmly slotting the ball into the back of the net.
However, DSK Shivajians nearly equalised just moments later when Chhangte just needed to connect to a lethal cross from the right across the face of the goal but eventually failed to make any connection with the ball.
Minutes later, Chhangte's shot was deflected past the far post by Aizawl custodian Albino Gomes.
Aizawl eventually weathered DSK's storm late in the game to pick up a crucial away win. With the help of this victory, Aizawl climbed to the pole position in the league table with 29 points from 13 games- 2 points ahead of East Bengal.
On the other hand, DSK were left stranded in 7th with 11 points.