I-League: Wasteful Aizawl held to 1-1 draw by Sudeva

Aizawl FC were held to a 1-1 stalemate by Sudeva Delhi FC on Sunday in the I-League at the Kalyani Municipal Stadium.

Aizawl dominated possession and were left to rue a number of missed chances, including a penalty in the second half, as Alfred Jaryan’s second-half strike cancelled out Kean Lewis’s goal in the first half.

Aizawl FC were the dominant team for much of the match and were on the attack from the time the referee blew the whistle to mark the start of the match. However, poor finishing once again took a toll on the Mizoram-based club. As early as the 6th minute, Aizawl’s Brandon Vanlalremdika cut inside the box and unleashed a curling shot that was Sudeva goalkeeper Rakshit Dagar did well to save.

With Aizawl FC dominating the tempo of the game, Sudeva Delhi FC relied on counter-attacks and they made the best of their opportunities that came their way. In the 19th minute, much against the run of play, Sudeva scored the first goal of the match. Aizawl’s defence was caught out by a long throw from the right flank switched off the Aizawl FC defence and the ball fell kindly for Lewis, who volleyed it the first time to hand Sudeva a 1-0 lead.

Though stunned, Aizawl FC did not hold back and committed even more bodies in attack to find the equaliser. However, that plan almost backfired in the 29th minute when Sudeva were once again given an opportunity to find the net. This time, Naocha Singh missed from point-blank range after he was put straight on to goal by a Naorem Mahesh Singh pass.

Aizawl began the second half the same way as did in the first. They almost scored the equaliser in the 51st minute, but poor finishing once again cost them heavy. Ramhlunchhunga robbed the Sudeva defence of possession and sent in a low cross for Lalremsanga inside the box. With ample space and no possible pressure, Sanga fluffed his shot and failed to convert from close range.

Sudeva became increasingly confident in defence and it took a venomous shot from outside the box from skipper Alfred Jaryan proved his worth for for Aizawl to finally find the equaliser.

Aizawl were then awarded a penalty in the 78th minute after a handball inside the box, but Malsawmtluanga’s strike was saved by Dagar.