Sreenidi Deccan FC edge past Shillong Lajong FC in thriller

13th April, Hyderabad: Sreenidi Deccan Football Club ended their 2023-24 I-League campaign with a nervy 3-2 victory over Shillong Lajong Football Club here at the Deccan Arena on Saturday. Goals from William Alves and Rosenberg Gabriel had put the Deccan Warriors 2-0 up at half time before Phrangki Buam reduced the deficit for the visitors but David Castaneda’s late spot kick ensured three points for the hosts.

Young goalkeeper Aryan Lamba was given his first appearance of the season as Lalromawia, William and Rilwan Hassan also returned to the line-up. Sreenidi Deccan made a fast start as William turned in Lalromawia’s cross from the right in the 4th minute to give his side the lead. The Brazilian then turned provider in the 16th minute as he held off the Shillong Lajong defender to tee up Rosenberg to power home a second goal.

Shillong Lajong came out firing on all cylinders in the second half as winger Buam broke through the Sreenidi Deccan defence in the 46th minute to pull one back for his side. Thereafter, the visitors pressed for an equaliser but the Deccan Warriors held firm and threatened to score on the counter-attack. That came to fruition in the 84th minute as Lalbiakliana was brought down inside the box and Castaneda converted the resulting penalty to make sure of the points. Buam then scored again in the 87th minute to ensure a nervy ending but the game ended 3-2 in favour of Sreenidi Deccan FC.

The Deccan Warriors finished as runners-up for the second successive season, with 48 points from 24 matches.