By Joseph Solomon, AIFF Media Team
CUTTACK: Recently crowned Hero I-League Champions Aizawl FC came from two goals down to register an impressive 3-2 win against Chennai City FC at the Barabati Stadium in Cuttack, Odisha on Sunday (May 07, 2017) in the 38th edition of the ongoing Hero Federation Cup.
Goals by Charles de Souza (13’) and Edwin Sydney (39’) in the first half left the Champions of India reeling, but an inspired second half performance including strikes from Al-Amna (53’) and L. Ralte (62’, 81’) led the Champions of India to top of Group A with three points.
The attacking intent from Chennai City FC was clear in the opening minutes that the Southern outfit will not sit back and defend against the Champions. Edwin Sydeny’s shot in the early minutes struck the woodwork giving a clear intention of Soundaranjan’s Team.
It was not long before Chennai City FC took the lead in the 13th minute when Charles de Souza bundled home his chance from inside the box. An early goal stunned Aizawl FC and they sat deep in attempt to soak pressure from their opponents, hence resulting in the match being restricted to the midfield.
Chennai City FC tried to break Aizawl FC’s well organized midfield and defence line but the opponents kept a tight shape. In the 39th minute however, things changed. Aizawl FC failed to maintain their neat line and tight defence shape and Edwin Sydeny slipped through the gaps, only to side foot the ball into the back of the net.
Chennai City FC led 2-0 at the halfway point against the Champions of India.
The Champions of India struck back and in fashion. In the 53rd minute Al-Amna bombarded into the Chennai City FC box and released a first time shot from a cutback pass to reduce Aizawl FC’s deficit to make the scoreline read 2-1.
Nine minutes later, doing the impossible yet again, Aizawl FC equalized proceedings as Laldanmawia Ralte’s header off a Jayesh Rane crossed left the opposition custodian bewildered, ending in the back of the net.
With the proceedings equalized and tempo on their side, Aizawl FC fostered chances to take the lead. Ralte scored again in the 81st minute to hand Aizawl FC the lead as the Champions of India came from two goals down to register an impressive comeback and snatch the match from the jaws of defeat as the full-time scoreline read 3-2 in Aizawl FC’s favour.