Chennai City FC extend their lead at the top of the table after winning another game away from home at the end of Matchday 5.
Willis Plaza hat-trick helps Churchill Brothers register their first win
FULL-TIME: Churchill Brothers 4-2 Shillong Lajong FC
Churchill Brothers: Willis Plaza (18′, 51′, 54′) Dawda Ceesay (39′); Shillong Lajong: Samuel Lalmuanpuia (30′) Samuel Kynshi (48′)
Churchill Brothers scored four goals past Shillong Lajong to secure their first win of the season in their first home game. The Trinidadian international Willis Plaza scored a hattrick for the Red Machines with captain Dawda Ceesay scoring a fourth.
Churchill Brothers dominated the game with 24 shots on goal. Shillong Lajong played their hearts out and it was a free-flowing game with both teams spurning chances to score during the game. The Shillong goals came from the two Samuels – Lalmuanpuia and Kynshi.
With this win, Churchill Brothers move into third position and the all-Indian squad of Shillong Lajong are in ninth after a fourth consecutive defeat.
Sandro’s brace keeps Chennai City FC on top of the pile
FULL-TIME: Aizawl FC 1-2 Chennai City FC
Aizawl FC: Ansumana Kromah (72′); Chennai City FC: Sandro Rodriguez (49′, 77′)
A brace by the Spanish attacking midfielder Sandro Rodriguez helped Chennai City overcome Aizawl FC and consolidate their position at the top of the table. After a goalless first half, Sandro put Chennai City in the lead in the 49th minute with a brilliant free kick.
Aizawl FC equalised from an excellent cross by Isak from the right flank. Chennai City FC couldn’t clear their lines and the ball fell fortuitously in the path of the Liberian Ansumana Kromah who finished it.
Chennai City FC scored within minutes to re-establish their lead. A cross from Romario Jesuraj found Sandro who struck a first-time left-footed shot which crashed into the net.
Chennai City have now won all three away games they’ve played so far and have a five-point lead at the top of the table. A winless Aizawl FC, on the other hand, are the last-placed team in the league.
A diving header sinks Minerva Punjab
FULL-TIME: Gokulam Kerala FC 1-0 Minerva Punjab FC
Gokulam Kerala FC: S. Rajesh (60′)
Picking up from where they left off last season, Gokulam Kerala put on a giant-killing act to edge past defending champions Minerva Punjab FC.
The first half was largely insipid and ended goalless. Minerva Punjab came out in the second half with an intent to score, but it was Gokulam Kerala who scored against the run of play. A great cross by Gani Ahmed Nigam beat the keeper at the near post and found Rajesh who scored with a diving header.
With this win, Gokulam Kerala FC move into third position and are five points behind table-toppers Chennai City FC.
Dipanda Dicka helps Mohun Bagan to another win
FULL-TIME: Real Kashmir FC 0-1 Mohun Bagan,
Mohun Bagan: Dipanda Dicka (69′)
After leading Mohun Bagan to victory with a brace in the game against Indian Arrows, Dipanda Dicka scored to help his team pick up all three points against Real Kashmir. The top goal-scorer in the I-League for the last two seasons, Dicka is in ominous form this season with three goals from four appearances.
Playing in front of a packed house at the TRC Turf Ground, both teams did not create any clear-cut chances in the first half. Real Kashmir started brightly in the second half, but were undone by a Henry Kisekka cross which found a waiting Dicka who put the header past the Real Kashmir custodian Bilal Khan.
Real Kashmir have now lost two games on the trot whereas Mohun Bagan now move to the second spot on the table and remain unbeaten this season.