‘We will fight and qualify for I-League,' says coach Shangpliang
From a Correspondent
Shillong, Mar 9:Shillong Premier League champions Langsning Football Club will played their opening fixture of the Second Division League, the I-League qualifying tourment, on March 14 at the JN Stadium here.
The team will take on the reserve side of Indian Super League side Cheniyin FC at 4:00pm in the opening game.
Langsning will be vying to be the fourth Shillong-based side to qualify for the I-League and will be banking in the main on local talent, with BrolingtonWarlarpih captaining the club, while the head coach role will be in the very capable hands of the respected HeringShangpliang. Veteran footballer Restomwell Khriam is the vice-captain.
The club held a press conference here on Friday, urging the fans to get behind the team in their quest for an I-League berth.
“We started our pre-season training in January and the preparations have been good. Eighty percent of the squad are from Meghalaya and we have three foreigners plus a few players from Sikkim and Manipur,” Shangpliang said.
“We hope to qualify for the I-League. That will be a great boost to football because of the passion of the fans and the talent of our boys. It’s a great opportunity for the Shillong boys. The foreigners we have show great spirit in training and we will fight and qualify,” he added.
The local flavour runs right through the team, with Langsning putting a lot of confidence in the players they won their first Shillong Premier League title with, like Warlarpih, goalkeeper FrolicsonDkhar, the team’s top scorer EbormiBuam and DonladDiengdoh, who scored the winning goal in the fil. Langsning have also added a bit of extra scoring bite, having signed KynsaiborLhuid and Kitboklang Pale, who were the top-scorers in Shillong’s First Division last year.
Two of the team’s three foreigners – LancineToure from Ivory Coast and Kento Sakurai of Japan – were present at the press conference.
“It’s my first time in Shillong, but I’ve played in India before. I’m really happy to be here and the team have been doing great in pre-season. We’ll do our best to give a good result,” Toure, a defender, said.
Sakurai had never played in India before joining Langsning. “I’ve had to learn how to play the Indian way style. But I’ve spent five months and have become more comfortable. We will do our best for the team and the fans.”