Shillong: Lajong’s wastefulness in-front of goal meant another home match went down the tunnel as Chennai City held the Reds to a frustrating goaless draw at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium here on Friday.
It was for the second consecutive time in three matches that Lajong failed to win despite being better on the day. The draw their second this season meant they slipped to fourth, six points behind leaders East Bengal who have accumulated 17 points from the same number of matches.
The last three matches for the Reds say two loses and one draw that saw them go down 0-1 to Neroca before being hammered 0-3 by the Indian Arrows and while coach Bobby Nongbet would have counted on the Chennai City fixture for returning to winning ways, the Southern outfit’s 2-1 debacle of Mohun Bagan at their own background tightened thing up for Lajong as they failed to find the net despite numerous attempts on goal.
It was the home side who dominated right form kick-off earning a close save as early as the third minute when Alen Deory’s through ball found Abdoulaye Koffi open on goal. But with only the goalkeeper to beat the Ivorian hit straight at the custodian.
Four minutes later Koffi turned creator as Redeem Tlnag failed to connect his shot off the former’s pass.
Alen’s inclusion into the starting line-up was a great call from Nongbet as the striker made some wonderful surge in the right flanks but Lajong’s woeful finish meant most chances went bagging. While some were shot straight at the goalie others were wide and Poljanec went happy not to concede at the break.
Chennai on the other hand came close quite a few times but Lajong’s constant attacks meant they were deep in their own half most of the time making it inconclusive for them to score.
Lajong’s beat chance however came came in the 78th minute when Aiman’s cross from the left was intended for Koffi, but the forward failed to connect and the goalkeeper had to come up with a brilliant save to keep Lajong off scoring. Minutes later, Alen rattled the bar and Chennai will be happy to go home with a point, that didn’t look to be when the Reds attacked with aplomb.
The Southerners next face debutants Neroca FC at home while Lajong take on Arrows in their next match.