Chhinga Veng FC will face Aizawl FC in the finals of the Mizoram Premier League. The defending champions registered a 2-0 aggregate win over Chanmari FC, while Aizawl FC beat Mizoram Police FC 4-3 over two thrilling encounters.
Semifinal First Leg: Dawngliana’s spot-kick puts Chhinga Veng in the driver’s seat.
Chhinga Veng FC 1 – Chanmari FC 0
Chhinga Veng FC: MS Dawngliana 55′ [P]
The first leg ended in a 1-0 win courtesy a second-half penalty by MS Dawngliana.
A cagey first half saw the two teams cancel each other out. However, the second half was a more open affair as Chhinga Veng FC threatened to open the scoring. Gatch Arthur Diomande and Lalromawia creating chances for the table toppers.
A handball from Chanmari defender C. Muana inside his area resulted in a penalty area. MS Dawngliana stepped up to finish with aplomb.
Jeremy Laldinpuia was sent off in injury time to compound Chanmari FC’s misery.
Semifinal First Leg: Stoppage time winner gives Aizawl FC the advantage
Aizawl FC 2-1 Mizoram Police FC
(Aizawl FC: Bektur Talgat Uulu 28′, Alfred Jaryan 90+3′);(Mizoram Police FC: Lalfakzuala 84′)
Aizawl FC grabbed a dramatic late winner in the first leg of the semifinal against Mizoram Police FC to gain the advantage into the second leg.
Mizoram Police started the match brightly, as they were presented with two chances to take the lead within the first quarter of the match. Lalbiakhlua hit Laltanpuia’s cross straight at the Aizawl FC goalkeeper Lalawmpuia. Minutes later, Malsawmfela found time and space in the box only to see his effort to be thwarted by Lalawmpuia.
The I-League side landed the sucker punch in the 28th minute with Kyrgyzstani midfielder Bektur Talgat Uulu finished off a freekick to register his first goal for the club.
Aizawl FC controlled proceedings after the restart only for Police goalie, Muanawma, to put in a superb display. His saves off Remsanga, Rochharzela and Aizawl skipper Alfred Jaryan kept Mizoram Police in the game.
The Police team punished Aizawl FC in the 84th minute. Lalbiakhlua headed the ball into the path of Lalfakzuala and a first-time volley past Lalawmpuia.
The match headed towards a draw when Alfred Jayran decided to turn the tie on its head. The Aizawl skipper gained possession outside of the box and set himself up between three Police defenders to strike an unstoppable shot into the top corner.
Aizawl FC 2 – Mizoram Police FC 1. The I-League team with the advantage going into the second leg.
Semifinal Second Leg: Own Goal dashes Chanmari’s hopes
Chhinga Veng FC 1 – Chanmari FC 0
Chhinga Veng FC: Lalmuanawma 2′ [OG]
Defending champions Chhinga Veng FC’s chances of reaching their second consecutive final looked a lot brighter within 90 seconds of the start of the second leg.
MS Dawngliana’s shot from the right-hand side was deflected off defender C. Lalmuanawma. The ball found its way into the net to give Chhinga Veng the lead.
Chanmari FC responded soon after with a period of attacking football as Vanlalbiaa Chhangte and Lalrintluanga were denied by the post. Meanwhile, MS Dawngliana nearly doubled the lead for Chhinga Veng.
Chanmari introduced Laldampuia and MC Malsawmzuala to add an attacking impetus. The duo narrowly missing their chances to score the equalizer. At the other end, Chhinga Veng FC nearly put the game to bed with Diomande headed straight into goalkeeper MS Dawngliana.
The defending champions saw off the challenge and ran out comprehensive winners as they booked their place in the finals.
Semifinal Second Leg: Aizawl hang on to a 2-2 draw to enter finals
Aizawl FC 2 – 2 Mizoram Police FC
(Aizawl FC Rochharzela 16’, Lalhmangaihkima 28’); Mizoram Police FC Lalfakzuala 8’, Malsawmtluanga 54’)
An action-packed encounter between two-time champions Aizawl FC and perennial challengers Mizoram Police FC ended in a 2-2 draw, enabling the I-League club to go through with a 4-3 aggregate score.
After finishing behind late into the first leg, Mizoram Police responded brilliantly at the start of the second leg.
Lalfakzuala received possession from the edge of the box and unleashed a strike into the top corner to give his team the lead in the 8th minute. 1-0 to the Policemen, 2-2 on aggregate.
Aizawl FC responded swiftly with Lalremsanga and Rochharzela combining for some good football with Rochharzela netting in the equalizer in the 16th minute. 1-1, 3-2 on aggregate.
The Aizawl team went on to take the lead in the 28th minute. Captain Alfred Jaryan’s strike bounced off the post and the rebound fell to K. Lalhmangaihkima who tapped it in. 2-1 Aizawl. 4-2 on aggregate.
After falling two goals behind on aggregate, Mizoram Police FC came out firing in the second period. On the 54th minute, the Police team pulled one back through R. Malsawmtluanga’s fine strike. 2-2, 4-3 on aggregate.
Mizoram Police goalkeeper Muanmawma kept his team in the tie when he thwarted Lalkhawpuimawia, as the striker was presented with a one-on-one opportunity. However, his team could not find the crucial goal with F. Lalrinpuia, Lalfakzuala, and R. Malsawmtluanga missing gilt-edged opportunities.
Aizawl FC hung on to the draw and set up a repeat of last year’s final when they face the defending champions Chhinga Veng FC on December 18.