Tiago Adan and Mason Robertson found the target as Real Kashmir FC eked out a thrilling 3-2 win over Aizawl FC in their first game of the 2021-21 I-League here on Monday.
While Tiago scored a brace in the match, Robertson scored the crucial third goal for the Snow Leopards in the second half. Aizawl FC did well to lead in possession stats, and remained in contest till the final whistle.
Ayush Chhetri got the first shot of the match in the seventh minute of play after he received a pass from a corner. But his long-range hit went wide off the target.
Two minutes later, Real Kashmir received a corner of their own and Surchandra Singh sent the ball straight into the box, which was headed in to the back of the net by striker Tiago to give the Snow Leopards a 1-0 lead in the ninth minute.
Aizawl FC continued to enjoy the possession as the first half progressed but could create very little chances. Aizawl FC received their second corner in the 29th minute, but the long-range shot from skipper R Malsawmtluanga went awry and the opportunity was missed.
Nearly 10 minutes later, Aizawl FC received their third corner, and this time, Lalthakima Ralte latched on to the cross with a direct header and scored the equaliser in the 38th minute to make it 1-1.
Unfortunately for Aizawl FC, Real Kashmir’s Tiago restored the lead in the additional minutes of the first half. A corner from Surchandra reached Mason, but his shot was parried away by the goalkeeper Lalmuansanga to Tiago, who latched on the rebound and struck it in to make it 2-1 as the first half came to a close.
The second half started with Aizawl continuing to keep the possession and searching for the equaliser.
In the 66th minute, Robertson got the third goal for Real Kashmir as he managed to get a header on the ball on a cross by Thoi Singh from the left flank. The ball went into the net and Real Kashmir went 3-1 up.
Just when it looked like Real Kashmir would run away with the win, a twist came in the 85th minute with Ramhlunchhunga scoring a goal with a shot from outside the box to reduce the deficit.
Tiago Adnan, who was the star performer for Real Kashmir, was stretchered off with three minutes remaining in the match.
Five additional minutes were added to the game and Real Kashmir comfortably defended the incessant attacks from Aizawl FC in the injury-time.