Shillong Lajong will host Aizawl FC in the second leg encounter of the I-League North East Derby at the JN Stadium in Shillong on Monday, 19th February at 8PM. The tickets for the match will be available at the SSA Stadium in Polo, The Mobile Centre Police Bazaar and Sports Spirit MUDA Complex.
Shillong Lajong won the first leg round of the North East Derby over Aizawl on 18th December with Redeem Tlang scoring the only goal of the match in the 59′ when the ball fell perfectly for him on the wing. Redeem was clinical with his finish as he put it into the bottom corner without giving the keeper a chance to prevent it from going in. Lajong is thus hoping to do the double over them on Monday.
Lajong is coming into this fixture after playing a goalless draw over Chennai City on 11th February in Coimbatore. The Reds failed to capitalise on their chances and were not clinical enough with their finishing. They are currently in the 5th position with 18 points after 5 wins, 3 draws and 8 losses.
Lajong’s last win came against North East rivals Neroca FC on 24th January in Imphal (2-0) and are in need of a win when they take on Aizawl on Monday. They have scored 13 goals this season with Samuel Kynshi, Redeem Tlang, Samuel Lalmuanpuia, Abdoulaye Koffi, Saihou Jagne, Juho Oh, Laurence Doe and Daniel Odafin registering their names on the score sheet this season so far.
Coach Alison Kharsyntiew shared his thoughts at the pre-match press conference and said, “The match against Aizawl is very important for us. It is a crucial game and we need to beat Aizawl. We want the three points.”
“We have been working on our weak points and recovery also was very important, as we were travelling a lot.”
“The team is balanced and in good spirit and it’s going to be a very tough game but we are ready for it.”
Aizawl FC played a 2-2 draw over the AIFF developmental side, Indian Arrows on 16th February. Masih Saighani and Dodoz found the net for Aizawl. They are sitting in the 6th position also with 18 points after 4 wins, 6 draws and 4 losses but with two games in hand over Lajong.
The Mizoram outfit recently sacked their head coach Paulo Meneses and have hired Santosh Kashyap who is very well versed with the playing conditions in Shillong. Their last game victory was against Chennai City at home on 13th January 2018.
Aizawl has scored a total of 14 goals in their I-League campaign so far and William Lalnunfela, Yugo Kobayashi, Kareem Omolaja Nurain, Andrei Ionescu, David Lalrinmuana, Lalthathanga Khawlhring, Masih Saighani and Leonce Dodoz have been among the goal scorers. Their highest goal scorer is Japanese striker, Yugo Kobayashi with 4 goals.
Speaking at the pre-match press conference, their newly appointed coach, Santosh Kashyap said, “The boys are adapting and learning very fast. I am inclined to implement new things and positively we will win this match.”
“We are confident and we will improve match by match. Every team cannot go to the top, it will be up and down and we are in the same phase. But we have the advantage of more games in hand.”
“I want to add more ideas to the team and give them more confidence. We will try to reduce mistakes and try to get positive results.”
“Lajong is a great experienced team with good foreigners and playing at home is a good advantage for them and it will be an entertaining North East Derby”, he said.