I-League 2018-19: 10-man NEROCA hold Aizawl FC to drab stalemate
.NEROCA FC's title hopes took another beating with a goal-less draw at home....

10-man NEROCA FC held on for a goal-less draw against Aizawl FC in the NorthEast derby in the I-League at the Khuman Lampak stadium on Sunday.

The hosts were made to play almost the entire second-half with 10 men after defender Eduardo Ferreira was given his marching orders for a dangerous challenge.

Manuel Fraile lined up his NEROCA side in a 4-2-3-1 formation with Felix Odil Chidi leading the line while Katsumi Yusa, Subash Singh and Malenmganba playing behind him. In defence, Eduardo Ferreira and Varney Kallon formed the central partnership.

Stanley Rozario, on the other hand, started in a similar formation with Lalkhawpuimawia and Leonce Dodoz deployed up front. Skipper Alfred Jaryan was partnered with Kareem Nurain in central midfield.

After a scrappy start to the game, the hosts slowly started imposing themselves on proceedings with Malenmganba looking a lively figure on the right flank.

Aizawl were reduced to playing on the break and they nearly profited from one before Dodoz sent his shot over the bar.

At the other end, a whipped ball from Shaikom Singh from the left flank was sneaking into the Aizawl goal before Lalawmpuia pulled off a fingertip save.

Lalit Thapa then did well to smother out the danger from an onrushing Alfred. The hosts then had a gilt-edge chance after Kallon released Subash Singh behind the Aizawl defence with a brilliant lobbed ball.

Subash only had an onrushing Lalawmpuia to beat but his effort was weak and failed to even reach the target. The visitors ended the first-half strongly with a couple of dangerous forays before Kareem Nurain rattled the NEROCA post with a thunderous shot.

The second period got underway with Eduardo being shown a straight red card for his rash tackle on Dodoz at the edge of the NEROCA box. The sending off caused the hosts to lose their heads with Sebastian and Aryn Williams going into the book as well for rash challenges in the centre of the pitch.

Aizawl started to dominate proceedings with their numerical superiority with Dodoz threatening with a couple of long-range attempts.

Stanley Rozario threw on Ansumana Kromah as he looked to go for the kill. The visitors kept knocking on the door while NEROCA’s attacking attempts were reduced to corners and set-pieces.

Despite playing with a man’s advantage, Aizawl failed to really create any clear-cut openings as the match ultimately ended in a goal-less stalemate.


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