Chennaiyin FC registered their first-ever win over NorthEast United FC
Defending champions Chennaiyin FC who didn’t have good games in first two matches, have returned to their winning ways. They won their second successive game of Hero Indian Super League 2016 when they beat table-toppers NorthEast United FC. NEUFC loses 1-0 at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati on Thursday. Which proved to be their first defeat of the campaign at home. Chennaiyin’s Davide Succi scored the only goal of the match to end Highlanders good run at home, and register their first victory over the north-east rivals.
It was a great day for the defenders as both side defended very well. But, it was Chennaiyin who dominated the game at NEUFC home turf, as they got their first chance of the match in the 16th minute when Baljit Sahni’s attempt at a cross clipped a defender through to Succi, who couldn’t capitalise on the loose ball collected by a diving Subrata Paul.
Machans came again in 27th minute, when Siam Hanghal being brought down outside the box by Didier Zokora and the resultant free-kick by Maurizio Peluso wobbled its way to Paul, who did well to palm it away before Hans Mulder headed over the rebound. The game sprung to life at this juncture with the Highlanders earning back-to-back corners with one of them a free header put over by Gustavo Lazzaretti.
NEUFC suffered an early blow when Nicolas Velez had to limp off the field in the 38th minute. Chennaiyin didn’t stop on the other end, as Maurizio Peluso strikes a dipping shot on goal from Baljit’s short corner but Subrata Paul was outstanding again to stop their southern rivals taking lead at their home turf.
But, second-half initial minutes were worst for the home side. Succi strikes a brilliant volley from the edge of the box which left no room for Paul to make a save for NEUFC. NorthEast tried to pull back one quickly as Katsumi Yusa dribble past and turned in a low cross which seemed to be heading towards Holicharan Narzary but young Jerry Lalrinzuala somehow made the crucial interception to save the day. The Highlanders had another chance minutes later with Emiliano Alfaro through on goal. This time Bernard Mendy pulled out a crunching tackle to thwart the striker.
NorthEast already at top with 10 points from six matches tasted their second defeat, and first at home by Chennaiyin FC. Highlanders could have equalize but the Chennaiyin defence proved their stalwart to defend their one goal advantage. Alfaro missed a couple of opportunities for the home side in last quarter of the match which gave Chennaiyin their first-ever win against the NorthEast, and visitors moved to third place with their seven points from four matches.