I-League 2018: Chennai City FC returns to top with 6-1 thumping of Shillong Lajong

Chennai City FC cruised to a comfortable 6-1 win against Shillong Lajong to return to the top of the I-League table.

Chennai City FC skipper Pedro Manzi in action against Shillong Lajong in the I-League on Saturday.   -  AIFF MEDIA

Spaniards Pedro Javier Manzi and Nestor Gordillo scored five goals amongst them to guide Chennai City FC to a 6-1 thumping of Shillong Lajong FC in the I-League clash at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday.

The win puts Chennai City back on the top of the I-League table with a three-point lead over second-placed Real Kashmir, while Shillong Lajong remains at the bottom with four points.

The attacking brand of football the team has played had taken it to the top of the table but it surprised many when it went on the defensive in its earlier clash against Real Kashmir last week. But this time around, Chennai City was back at its best and it paid off with the in-form Nestor shooting home a stunner in the 12th minute.

A well-directed kick by Sandro from the edge of the box found Nestor and he belted home to give the home side an early lead.

Chennai City went full throttle and came close to scoring twice through Roberto Eslava and Manzi, but both players found the side of the post. Shillong, on the other hand, looked clueless right through. It was a team of youngsters but they failed to match the lightning speed of the home players, who enjoyed the greater possession for most part.

The host doubled its lead in the 38th minute when Eslava scored off a header, much to the joy of the spectators.

Chennai City continued its dominant display in the second half and made it 3-0 in quick time when the hungry-looking Manzi fired past the hapless Shillong custodian. The visitor pulled one back through a brilliant free kick from Samuel Lalmuanpuia in the 53rd minute.

Nestor further extended Chennai City's lead with a surging run and nestled the ball into the net in the 69th minute to make it 4-1. Manzi followed it up with two more goals in the space of three minutes, with the second coming off a penalty kick, to score a hat-trick and make it a memorable night for the home side.

The result

Chennai City FC 6 (Nestor Jesus 12 & 69, Roberto Eslava 38, Pedro
Manzi 49, 78 & 81) bt Shillong Lajong FC 1 (Samuel Lalmuanpuia 53).

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