Football

I-League | Chennai City holds Aizawl FC

The crucial one: Roberto Eslava (jersey no. 4) scored from the spot to help Chennai City FC equalise against Aizawl FC.

The crucial one: Roberto Eslava (jersey no. 4) scored from the spot to help Chennai City FC equalise against Aizawl FC.  

William Lalnunfela put the host ahead early in the opening half before Roberto Eslava scored a penalty minutes before the break to equalise

Chennai City FC thwarted host Aizawl FC’s spirited challenge to play out a creditable 1-1 draw in the I-League here at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium on Tuesday.

William Lalnunfela put the host ahead early in the opening half before Roberto Eslava scored a penalty minutes before the break to equalise.

Early goal

Chennai City conceded the goal early as the team took time to settle down to the bounce and feel of the artificial turf.

Alfred Jaryan, the Liberian play-maker in his fifth season with Aizawl, intercepted Chennai City midfielder Charles Lordusamy a few yards from the box and set up an unmarked Lalnunfela with the opportunity.

The Aizawl forward smartly lobbed it over an onrushing Chennai City goalkeeper Nauzet Garcia to find the net.

Stung by the ninth-minute goal, Chennai City regrouped quickly and took control.

First opportunity

It had its first opportunity in the 18th minute, earning a free-kick just outside the opposition box.

Katsumi Yusa put the set-piece right to Pravitto Raju, whose header did not find the target.

The visitors, who struggled for a long time to produce the decisive pass in the striking zone, finally got the chance in the 40th minute as the Aizawl midfielder made the mistake of handling the ball inside his own box while trying to challenge Yusa, who was getting into a dangerous position.

Eslava outwit Aizawl goalkeeper Lalremruata from the spot.

Aizawl FC, which employed six u-22 academy boys, tried to regain control after the break.

But Chennai City did well to secure its defence and kept the host attack at bay before ensuring a point.

The result: Aizawl FC 1 (William Lalnunfela 9) drew with Chennai City FC 1 (Roberto Eslava 41-pen).

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 9:14:04 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/football/i-league-chennai-city-holds-aizawl-fc/article30332626.ece

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