Shillong Lajong FC is away from home for the first time this season to clash against Ashley Westwood’s Blue Army at the Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on Sunday at 7pm. The match will be telecasted live on Ten Action.
Lajong kicked off the I-League this season on the 10th January in a home match against Mumbai FC and after dominating much of the match, the Reds had to settle for one point, after playing out a goalless draw.
Westwood’s team however, have played two matches already this season and shined on both occasions against Salgaocar FC and Aizawl FC, collecting 6 points in total. Undoubtedly the Blue’s had a good start to the new season of the I-League and are top contenders for the League Championship. They have also strengthened the squad and recently replaced their injured midfielder Joshua Walker with fellow English midfielder Michael Collins.
Meanwhile, Shillong Lajong FC is shaping up into a more confident and stronger team this season and will heavily rely upon on the two Brazilian strikers; Uilliams and Fabio. The two played for the first time together in the previous match and certainly looked promising. The club’s new addition, Japanese Defender Yusuke Yamagata, is yet to make his debut for the Reds. Penn Orji is playing for the second consecutive season for Lajong and is expected to command the team from the midfield and supply good balls to the forwards.
The Young Lajong Squad with an average age of just 22 are aiming for a good result in their first away match of the season under the direction of Head Coach Thangboi Singto. The Lajong gaffer spoke to the Lajong Media, on his team’s first away match. He said, “Everyone knows the importance of the first away match. I believe that the team is getting ready mentally and physically.”
For a team to play an away match is certainly not easy considering Lajong’s long distant travel from the Hills of the North East to down South and to add to that, the change in climatic conditions. The team does take time to settle and pressure certainly builds up too. Even Thangboi agreed when asked if pressure currently exists in the team. He said, “Pressure is always there whether it is home or away. But we need to energise the pressure into a positive one.”
Singto also said that it will be tough to play against Bengaluru as they are a very well balanced team. “We need to be at our collective best to get a good result”, he added.
In football, a team wins if they perform well and score goals. Likewise, every team needs their strikers to perform their duties of scoring goals. Thangboi also said that Uilliams and Fabio need to open their account to help the team get points. He concluded saying that “Lajong is a young and talented team. We can do much better if there is continuity in the long run. We expect the team to do well this season.”
All the Lajong Faithfuls can watch the big clash live on Ten Action on Sunday. The match will be Lajong’s second game of the season, and a lot is expected from this young North East Team who has been in the National Football League since 2009. The team are looking for a good finish and give the fans an entertaining game to watch on their television screens.