The grand finale of the Gionee Shillong Premier League 2016 will be played under the floodlights of the JN Stadium Shillong at 5PM on Wednesday November 9.
Last two years, league title holders, Shillong Lajong FC will look to defend their title again in the 2016 edition of Meghalaya’s top football competition when they take on Rangdajied United on Wednesday night.
At the end of the league stage, it was Lajong and Rangdajied who finished in the first and second place respectively. Lajong won a total of 10 matches, lost only once and drew three times and earned 33 points after 14 games. While, Rangdajied United won 9 games, lost 4 times and drew once and ended the league stage as second best with 28 points.
Both the teams deservedly advanced to the first semi-finals but it was the Blues who emerged victorious over Lajong on 31st October winning by 2-1 and sailed to the finals of the tournament.
A tight second semi-final contest was played on the 4th of November where Lajong took on another strong side in the league, Royal Wahingdoh FC who finished in the third position with 27 points and then went on to win the elimination match against Langsning FC. It was a thrilling affair at the JN Stadium that kept the spectators during the game in the edge of their seats. Both teams delivered their best performance but in the end it was the defending champions, Shillong Lajong FC who came out victorious from the very exciting match.
In the year 2013, Rangdajied United FC were the title winners of the Shillong Premier League and then came in Shillong Lajong FC who became the youngest team to win a Shillong Premier League Super Division in 2014 with an average age of 19 and without the service of any foreigner. The club solely relied on their youngsters from the Academy and the faith in them proved to be worthwhile as they went on to win the championship for the second time in a row in 2015.
That was that. Tomorrow will be a new chapter where both teams have their own vision and hopes.
For Lajong, the aim is simply to defend the title and win for the third consecutive year. This would also serve as an added boost for these young guns who would begin the preparation for the upcoming I-League which is only two months from now.
Thangboi Sinto said that tomorrow’s game is very important and the team can get the results by working hard and playing good football throughout the match.
“Our first result against Rangdajied in the semis could have been better but I applaud the boys as they came back stronger to reach the finals of the Gionee SPL.”
“It is a big opportunity for the team to win the championship for the third consecutive time and also equal Royal Wahingdoh’s record as they were the first team to do so.”
“The onus is on all the players to play according to plans and get the desired results.”
“The boys are all pumped up and know the significance of the match and have given their 100 percent at training for this big game”, he concluded.