SLFC 1 – 1 RUFC
The Shillong Derby ended with the scores all square at 1-1 in a thrilling encounter here at the J.N.Stadium, Shillong. Rangdajied United FC were the first to find the net but Boithang Haokip managed to put Shillong Lajong FC back on level terms in the second half.
The game started with much thrill and excitement as both teams fought it out in the field with more at stake than just three points. The bitter rivalry entered the national stage when Rangdajied United FC were promoted to the I-League this season.
After both the teams had been creating chances in the opening stages of the game, it was Rangdajied United who first found the back of the net in the 18th minute. Rangdajied midfielder Yohei Iwasaki was left unmarked in the box and he capitalised after he headed the ball coming from a corner into the back of the net.
The goal though did not change much of the balance in the game as both teams kept firing in each other’s boxes with bodies flying everywhere. Pressures were mounting on both sides as they look to impress in front of the 20,000 capacity crowd. The highly anticipated match ended with the away side in the lead at the break.
Shillong Lajong were missing the services of Wailadmi Passah and Jibon Singh but the home side came back in the second half with much believe and flow as they kept the visitor’s custodian Subrata Paul very busy. Subrata had to push the ball off the line a few times in the match with the closest chance coming from a Lajong free kick. The Reds then found their equaliser in the 75th minute when Boithang’s cross was left untouched by Uilliams and flew past the unprepared Subrata Paul into the side netting. The goal sent the crowd in frenzy and it became an immediate catalyst as Lajong kept pushing hard for the win after finding the back of the net.
Rangdajied United fielded 4 of their 5 players they took on loan this week from the IMG-Reliance league but it was not enough as Shillong Lajong appeared the better side, creating chances till the last minute.
The closing stages saw most of the ball in Rangdajied’s half as Lajong kept pushing for the win but it was not enough as the teams ended the match all squared. The game was a well fought battle with both teams coming out of the game with great positives. Both the sides provided
brilliant displays living up to the expectation and anticipation of the football crazy city of Shillong. The derby will be a fixture to be look forward to in the future but Rangdajied United FC still have a lot of work to do to get out of the relegation zone.
After this draw, Shillong Lajong FC remain in the 5th position with 14 points having played 10 games already. The draw also meant that the home side have now been unbeaten for the past six games. Rangdajied United FC however are still struggling at the bottom with 4 points from 12 games.