Kolkata, Feb 18 (PTI) Former champions Aizawl FC thrashed Mohammedan Sporting 3-0 in a fine display of attacking football in an I-League match here on Thursday.
A Malsawmtluanga goal from a free-kick in the 16th minute and strikes from Lalremsanga (64th) and Lalliansanga (67th) in the second half led Aizawl's dominant win over the Black Panthers, who could not create many goal-scoring chances.
Yan Law's Aizawl FC started the game with their usual style of attacking football, while keeping possession and rotating the ball around the opponent's penalty box.
In the 11th minute, Brandon Vanlalremdika's header off a Lalliansanga free-kick came close to handing Aizawl FC the lead, but the opposition goalkeeper's quick reaction thwarted the attack.
However, five minutes later, Mohammedan's Priyant Singh was beaten by a moment of sheer brilliance.
Malsawmtluanga's swirling free-kick from 25 yards left Priyant in absolute disarray as the ball curved and crashed into the bottom left corner to hand Aizawl FC the lead out of nowhere.
Aizawl FC should have been two goals up going into the half-time, but Lalliansanga's shot from inside the box, shortly before the breather, rattled the bar and went out.
Lalliansanga was once again unlucky with his strike, seconds into the second half. This time, his glorious effort from outside the box crashed against the bar and went out of play once again.
With Aizawl dominating from the beginning of the match, Mohammedan Sporting had made substitutions at the break to bring in fresh legs.
Like the first half, the second also needed a moment of sheer brilliance from Aizawl FC to double their lead. That moment came in the 64th minute when Lalremsanga provided a fine strike.
From the left side of the box, the forward saw a narrow opening and capitalised on it to its fullest, as his shot sent the opposition goalkeeper wrong-footed and slammed into the bottom left corner.
A few minutes later, Aizawl FC made it three. This time Lalliansanga headed home from close range and found the net after Lalmalsawma's delicious cross beat the entire Mohammedan defence, finding Lalliansanga at the back post.
The win, their third of the season, took Aizawl to 12 points from eight matches, two points clear of fifth-placed TRAU. PTI PDS PDS SSC SSC