Shillong, May 13: Langsning FC were beaten 3-1 by TRAU FC in their last match of the Second Division League group stage at the Khuman Lampak Main Stadium in Imphal today.
Ngangbam Naocha scored a brace and Reisangmei Vashum added another goal for the hosts before prolific scorer Kitboklang Pale pulled one back for Langsning at the very end of the match.
This was only the first time in 10 outings that Langsning conceded more than one goal in a match and it came against the team that have qualified for the final round at the top of their game in front of 3,000 adoring fans. The Manipur club have scored in each and every one of their group matches and have lost just one game in their campaign.
TRAU thus end the group stage with 23 points. With 15 points, Langsning finish third, behind Bengaluru FC reserves, who were also in action today.
The visitors made two changes to their starting line-up from the resounding 5-0 triumph against Jamshedpur FC reserves on 1st May, bringing in Donlad Diengdoh and Ronaldkydon Lyngdoh Nonglait in place of Fullmoon Mukhim and Kento Sakurai. U-22 player Arnesius Marwein played the entire second half as he came on for Dibinroy Nongspung as a substitute, while another U-22 player Ronney Chel Khongrangjem got his first outing in the competition when he came on for Milancy Khongstia in the 69th minute.
However, the Shillong team could not get the best out of the conditions and Naocha bagged the opening goal in the 34th minute. It then took until the 49th before TRAU would go on to double their lead with Naocha again scoring. Vashum then took the game completely away from Langsning exactly 10 minutes later when he made it 3-0 in favour of the home team.
The action was not done, however, as Langsning tried their best to make the result less one-sided and their persistence paid off when Pale scored his seventh goal of the tournament in the 90th minute. At the time of writing this report, that puts him joint second in the Second Division.
Langsning now return home after a mixed Second Division campaign where they performed brilliantly in some crucial matches, but could not do consistently. They will now have to work hard in preparation to defend their Shillong Premier League title, no doubt bolstered by the experience of playing at this level against tough opposition.
(Photo credit: TRAU FC/Facebook)