East Bengal Vs Shillong Lajong (4-0)
Coming to this game both the teams had won their last games.
Match started with Shillong Lajong FC showing their attacking intent away from home charging bodies forward and pressing East Bengal high up the pitch. Shillong Lajong FC had come prepared with the attacking mindset and to get the best possible outcome from the game.
In the beginning East Bengal didn’t see much of the ball but they did really well defending against the opposition who really looked desperate to get an early goal.
FORMATION EAST BENGAL SHILLONG LAJONG FC
Basic Formation 4-2-3-1 4-1-3-2
While Defending 4-4-1-1 4-4-2
While Attacking 4-3-3 4-3-3
East Bengal started with 4-2-3-1 system and Shillong Lajong FC started with 4-1-3-2.
Shillong Lajong FC had their fair share of chances in the 1st half but were unable finish in the final 3rd, best chance for them came from a brilliant lob through by B Haokip to Bipin Singh where Bipin only needed to beat the keeper to get the visitors a rewarding lead for their persistent attacking against the home team but he managed to hit it wide of the post.
First shot on target of the game for East Bengal came from M Rafique, shot just outside of the box saved by V Kaith down to his left. Shillong Lajong FC were knocking on the door again and again, this time on the break Ulliams got the ball in final 3rd and he took a shot which went wide.
First Goal started with the throw in on the left side for East Bengal, change of flanks and M Hossain’s beautiful pass to sanju prandhan on the right wing who found himself with the acres of space provided a low ground cross to the far post and R Martins scored an easy tap-in.
Here is an image illustrating how 1st goal was orchestrated:
Shillong Lajong FC was trying to get back on level terms after conceding the first goal against the run of play but soon conceded 2nd goal, East Bengal pressing in the final 3rd which resulted in them getting the ball just outside the box where R Martins unleashed an absolute stunner past V Kaith into the net. V Kaith could not even move such was the brilliance of the shot.
Soon came 3rd goal, R Martins links up with M Rafique who chips the ball over the defender frees R Martins who only has to beat the keeper and does that in style by taking the ball around the keeper and slotting the ball into the net.
The Score line at the half-time seemed a bit harsh on Shillong Lajong FC but they had only themselves to blame for not covering up in time and the sheer brilliance of R Martins who was on fire.
East Bengal had much lesser attacks then Shillong Lajong FC but they were much more dangerous. In Football, quality matters more than quantity.
Shots by both the teams in 1st half:
SHILLONG LAJONG FC
2nd Half, Shillong Lajong FC started with the same attacking intent but with more solidity in defending. East Bengal was happy to sit back and see out the game or attack on the break. 4th goal for East Bengal resulted due to mishap by V Kaith who tried to catch the ball from B Jairu’s cross and the ball slipped through his hands.
Other than that goal, 2nd half was all about Shillong Lajong FC trying to show that they are better than what score line suggest. They did manage to put some brilliant balls in East Bengal’s box but there were not enough bodies in the box to meet them.
Below are the images to show the shots and crosses by Shillong Lajong FC in the 2nd half:
Have to commend East Bengal’s defending against a stubborn Shillong Lajong FC who tried almost everything to get on the score sheet but couldn’t and were very impressive going forward in the 1st half.
The score line does not depict what had happened in the game. There are still plenty of positives for Shillong Lajong FC to take away from the game and build on this game.