Sunday, June 16, 2024

Stoppage time goal dashes Lajong hopes


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By Our Reporter

SHILLONG: A stoppage-time goal by Akram Magohrabi helped Churchill Brothers defeat Shillong Lajong FC on its home turf during their Round 7 match of the I-League at JN Stadium, Polo here on Saturday.

The match was headed for a tame draw after the regulation 90 minutes, but for the sheer brilliance of Magohrabi whose powerful left-footer from about 20 yards away saw the ball sailing into the nets, leaving the home crowd in despair.

Magohrabi’s goal was a result of lack of focus on the part of the home players during the crucial closing minutes of the match.

With this victory, Churchill now has 15 points from their 7 matches and are occupying the third place in the points table while Lajong is lingering in the eighth spot with 7 points from a equal number of matches.

The first half was a dull affair with both teams not playing to their full potential. Neither side could make much inroads into their opponents’ half.

Churchill Brothers came close to scoring in the 25th minute of the match when Moghrabi hit a powerful strike only to be brilliantly saved by Lajong custodian Lalthuammawia Ralte.

Following the breather, the pace of the match started to pick up with both teams looking determine to get that all-important goal. Both the teams got a number of chances with each side hitting the opponents’ post atleast once.

In the 56th minute, local boy Eugeneson Lyngdoh made a brillliant pass from the right flank towards Sushil Kumar Singh whose shot missed the goal by a whisker.

In the 64th minute the visitors came close to changing the scorecard when Bineesh Balan volleyed the ball for a Magohrabi header which kissed the far post on its way out.

In the 69th minute Lajong’s Jacob Lalrawngbawla took a long range powerful shot from just outside the danger arc but the ball re-bounced after hitting the post.

With two minutes left for the final whistle, Moghrabi produced the moment of the match when he took a long try and found the back of the nets to earn three points for his team and the man-of-the-match award for himself.

It was yet another disappointing outing for the local fans who had come to JN Stadium hoping for a turnaround of their team’s fortunes following back-to-back losses against Dempo SC and Mumbai FC.


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