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RKFC at par with Churchill after goalless draw against Aizawl

Aizawl, Jan 11: Real Kashmir FC jumped to third spot in I-League after holding former champions Aizawl FC with a draw at their home turf, Rajiv Gandhi Stadium in Mualpui.

Real Kashmir have drawn level on points with second-placed Churchill Brothers, but are behind on goal difference, as the head-to-head record between the two teams currently stands at 0-0.

Hence, the Snow Leopards are placed third on the 12th table with 22 points.

The team left behind Neroca FC, which currently holds the fourth spot with 21 points in 11 matches.

The game, which started at 2pm, saw attacking football,however, both the teams couldn’t materialise in 90 minute long contest and ultimately settled for a point each.

No changes were seen in Real Kashmir FC squad, as head coach David Robertson continued with the list of players, who defeated Mohun Bagan earlier this week.

Aizawl, however, preferred three changes by slotting in defender Govin Singh, Paul Ramfangzaua and youngster Lalremsanga in playing XI.

Aizawl’sLalremsanga made his debut in the league in the absence of injured senior striker AnsumanahKromah and Lalkhawpuimawia.

Host team’s new coach Stanley Rozario could not be present in the dugout because of a delayed flight. In his absence, assistant coach’s Rohmingthanga and Jonathan Lalbiakkima were in charge for the game.

Soon after the match commenced, both the teams were locked in an intense midfield battle for major part of the game.

Aizawl had the first real chance of the match as Aaron Katebe misguided header landed in the path of Remsanga who was striding towards the goal. But the Mizo striker could not find the back of the net as his shot flew past the crossbar.

Moments later, RKFC had similar chance but couldn’t be captalised as striker Abednedo Kofi Tetteh’s heavy touch after beating Gurpreet Singh allowed the keeper to recover and collect the ball.

At 26th minute of the game, RKFC missed the second chance to score a goal when a corner from Surchandra Singh couldn’t be converted by strikers Kofi, Armand Bazie and Mason Robertson.

The team lost another chance at 30th minute of the game when another successful cornor by Surchandra Singh and a header by Tettehbyepassed Goal Keeper Gurprret Singh but was stopped by Vanlalthanga.

The first half of the game passed without a goal by both of the teams.

The second half of the game saw changes from RKFC as David Robertson replaced FarhanGanaie and Tetteh with Khalid Quyoom and Ritiwik Das respectively.

Similarly, Aizawl made three changes by bringing in Lalrinchhana, IsakVanlalruatfela and Albert Zohmingmawla.

The entire second half started much brighter for the away team. Tetteh beautifully dummied the ball for Suchandra but the Manipuri’s powerful shot from just outside the box was timely blocked by Kassaga.

Robertson’s side attacked as Aizawl crowded their defense line.

Danish Farooq’s curling effort from inside the box was acrobatically saved by Gurpreet much to the delight of the home fans who thanked the Punjabi goalkeeper with a loud roar.

RKFC head coach, David Robertson said the game was difficult for them due to the nature of the ground.

“We are happy with the results. We got few chances but couldn’t score. We missed upfront today due to the absence of Krizo. We are delighted with 22 points now,” he said.