SHILLONG: Shillong Lajong FC emerged victorious from a five-goal thriller against Rangdajied United in an entertaining Under-19 North East Zone Qualifier at the JN Stadium, Polo, on Wednesday.
After creating a few good chances, Lajong were rewarded with a goal when Zodingliana drove the ball into the net in the 34th minute.
Randajied’s juniors pushed hard for the equaliser before the break but were unsuccessful and both teams thus went into the break with only one goal on the scorecard in favour of Shillong Lajong.
Reds’ defender Jimmy was replaced with forward Shanbor at the start of the second half and this change helped Lajong start the second half brightly as they looked a more confident side with some beautiful football in the opponents’ half.
Rangdajied, however, levelled the scores after Gamelieh Kharlyngdoh converted a spot kick after his team were awarded a penalty in the 55th minute.
Both sides continued to fight it out for the lead, but several chances went abegging.
Mebanshan Suting gave the Blues what they were looking for, putting them into the lead in the 72nd minute.
However, the Lajong juniors were not ready to give up and substitute Ksankupar made it 2-2 by scoring in the 85th minute.
Just when the game looked likely to end in a draw, captain Redeem Tlang pulled off the win for Lajong in the 89th minute, clipping a rebound into the net.
SLFC thus maintain their lead atop the NE Zone table, now with nine points from three games, with Royal Wahingdoh in second on six.
Rangdajied are third with a solitary point, in the same situation as Green Valley.
The next U-19 match will be between Lajong and Green Valley on March 4.