MUMBAI: An energetic Aizawl FC held Mumbai FC 2-2 tonight at the Cooperage Stadium in Mumbai. The Yellow Submarines came into this game without a win in their last four Hero I-League games and things once again didn’t go right for Khalid Jamil’s men as they failed to defend their solitary goal not once but twice.
Mumbai FC had perfect start tonight when they earned an early penalty just inside two minutes and the Japanese striker Ryuki Kozawa converted it nicely from the 6-yard spot with a brilliantly taken spot-kick. This was a start Khalid Jamil was hoping for considering Mumbai FC did not lose a single game this season after taking the lead first.
Mumbai FC played extremely well on the counter-attack for the first fifteen minutes. Aizawl’s backline soaked in the pressure early in the first half before creating havoc in Mumbai’s final-third.
In the 18th minute, bursting into the box from the right flank, Zohmingmawia unleashed a powerful right-footed shot which went all the way into the back of the net levelling the score 1-1.
Mumbai FC had a huge opportunity to get the lead once again in the 35th minute when Eric Brown found Darren Caldeira unmarked in the box with a delicate lob ball but the latter’s feeble header did not trouble Aizawl FC custodian Zothanmawia at all.
In the dying minutes of the first half, Aizawl had their go on the goal when Yuta Kinowaki and Alfred Jaryan came very close to find the back of the net.
The second half was equally intense as both the outfit hit the gas to take all the three points by the scruff of the neck. Aizawl’s goal scorer Albert Zohingmawia, who had an outstanding match tonight, tested Sanjiban Ghosh from long range with a powerful low drive but it was grabbed by the goalie with much ease.
Eric Brown, who was handed the armband tonight, finally had his say in the 57th minute through a free-kick which rattled the inside of the post and went in to give Mumbai FC a 2-1 lead. This was Eric Brown’s first goal of the season for Mumbai FC.
Surprisingly, the jubilation didn’t stay long as Aizawl FC got the much-needed equaliser within six minutes. A loose shot inside the box got a huge deflection from Mumbai’s Syed Rahim Nabi and went all the way into the back of the net, even Sanjiban Ghosh couldn’t put it out.
In the dying minutes, Eric Brown’s bullet free kick from almost forty yards struck the right-hand post making all the spectators standing to their feet. A minute later, Eric once again came close to net his brace but Zothanmawia saved his powerful left-footed shot.
Aizawl’s Captain David Lalrinmuana received his third Hero of the Match award tonight for his impressive performance.
After this stalemate, Mumbai FC move up to fifth spot with 11 points whereas Aizawl FC are on the seventh position with 9 points having played equal matches.
– I-League Media