Aizawl, Jan 13 (IANS) Defending champions Aizawl FC blanked Chennai City FC 2-0 in an I-League match at the Rajiv Gandhi Stadium here on Saturday.
Japanese striker Yugo Kobayashi (26th minute) and David Lalrinmuana (32nd) scored a goal apiece in the first half to help Aizawl garner their fourth win of the ongoing season.
The hosts thus held on the sixth spot with 13 points from seven matches.
Chennai continue to be at the eighth spot with nine points from 10 matches.
The defending champions made four changes from the side that lost to Mohun Bagan in their last match as K. Lalthathanga, Leonce Dodoz, Lalramhmunmawia and William Lalnunfela were replaced by Lalrosanga, Yugo Kobayashi, David Lalrinmuana and Albert Zohmingmawia.
Chennai City’s head coach V. Soundarajan made only a single change as French striker Jean Michael Joachim was included in the starting XI in place of Murilo Almeida.
Aizawl started on a positive note, pressing hard on their opponents.
Midfield star David Rinmuana, who returned after recovering from a minor injury, proved vital for the hosts as he earned a penalty when he was brought down inside the penalty box by Chennai’s Kyrgyz defender Shumeiko in the 24th minute.
Kobayashi stepped to calmly slot the ball into the back of the net and notch up his third goal of the season.
Chennai, who stunned Kolkata giants Mohun Bagan before holding Shillong Lajong in chilly weather, did little to halt Aizawl’s free-flowing game and their key player Soosairaj could hardly make any impact on the hosts’ defence.
David outfoxed the Chennai defence again when he scored Aizawl’s second goal. David’s shot from just outside the box hit the woodwork after a huge deflection. Chennai goalkeeper Poljanec dived the right way but the ball ricocheted off his arm to enter the goal.