The zonal phase of the U15 Youth League is nearing its end. Over the past three weeks, Groups E and F played all their matches, and the last few matches of the Guwahati-Shillong Zone (Group D) were also played. Let’s take a look at some of the highlights of these matches, before we look back on how the first 6 groups ended the zonal phase.
Guwahati-Shillong Zone (Group D)
On January 12th, Royal Wahingdoh FC U15 chalked up a pretty convincing 8-0 win over Guwahati FC U15. Modester Matlai managed a hat-trick, while Freestar Kharbangar scored a brace. Top scorer of the season, Rheadolf Nelson Nongneng Daloi scored in the 5th minute, giving his team the lead, but didn’t score again after that. However, at their next match on January 15th, Rheadolph scored a brace, with goals in the 17th and 89th minute. A goal by Thongram Santosh Singh in the 28th minute gave Royal Wahingdoh FC a comfortable 3-1 win over Shillong Lajong FC U15.
It was a tighter affair on January 16th with SAI-Guwahati U15 edging out Rangdajied United FC U15 4-3. The next three matches for the group ended in a draw. On January 17th, Guwahati FC U15 and Gauhati Town Club U15 scored a goal each. On the 19th, SAI-Guwahati met Royal Wahingdoh in what should have been an interesting match, unfortunately it ended in a goalless draw. On the 20th, Gauhati Town Club matched Shillong Lajong goal for goal, and the match ended 2-2. On the 21st, Rangdajied United FC U15 took on Guwahati FC U15, beating them 4-1.
The last few matches of the group kicked-off on January 29th with Royal Wahingdoh FC U15 taking on Rangdajied United FC U15. With a brace each by Rheadolph and Rickyson Makdoh, plus a goal by Thongram, Royal Wahingdoh managed a comfortable 5-1 victory over their opponents. The following day, Shillong Lajong hosted Guwahati FC U15. While the visitors took the lead early, with a goal in the 21st minute, the hosts were quick to respond. They equalised soon after, and even had a one-goal lead by half-time. Another three goals in the second half ended the game with Shillong Lajong beating Guwahati FC 5-1.
On Sunday, Gauhati Town Club U15 played SAI-Guwahati U15. A brace by Raikut Shisha Buam gave SAI-Guwahati a 2-0 victory over their opponents. On Wednesday, Guwahati FC U15 hosted Rangdajied United FC U15. The hosts were left without an answer as Wanshanlang Dkhar and Diego Khyriem scored three goals between them to carry Rangdajied to a comfortable 3-0. Royal Wahingdoh FC U15 played SAI-Guwahati U15 on Thursday afternoon, reaffirming their position at the top of the table with an emphatic 4-1 victory. The zone’s last match was played this afternoon between Shillong Lajong FC U15 and Gauhati Town Club U15. Shillong Lajong won 2-0 after S. Bamon scored two quick goals just before half-time.
Rest of India I
The matches for Group E started on January 18th with Gangtok Himalayan SC U15 playing Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) SPT U15, and Neroca FC U15 playing Aizawl FC U15. A brace by Ong Tshering Sherpa and a goal by Suraj Limboo gave Gangtok Himalayan SC an easy 3-0 victory over NRL SPT. Although Neroca FC and Aizawl FC went into half-time without a single goal, a brace by Peter Lalduhawma in the second half saw Aizawl FC winning 2-0. On the 20th, Aizawl FC U15 played Gangtok Himalayan SC U15. Once again, it was a solo performance for Aizawl, and a brace by F. Lalrohlua gave them a 2-0 victory over Gangtok Himalayan SC. Later that day, Neroca FC U15 played NRL SPT U15. Neroca FC took the lead early on, with a goal in the 15th minute by Gotimayum Muktasana Sharma. Two goals in the second half, one by Pukhrambam Priyason Singh, and another by Khaidem Arjun ended the match 3-0 in favour of Neroca FC.
The last two matches for the Zone were played on January 22nd. Gangtok Himalayan SC U15 took on Neroca FC U15, and Aizawl FC U15 played NRL SPT U15. Neroca’s Pukhrambam Priyason Singh scored his team’s four goals, giving them an easy 4-0 win over Gangtok Himalayan SC U15. In Group E’s last match, NRL SPT U15 were looking for their first win. Unfortunately, an own goal by Sri Dipankar Das gave Aizawl the advantage in the 23rd minute. In the second half, Aizawl scored another three goals, finishing at the top of the table with a 4-0 win.
Rest of India II
The matches for group F started on January 18th, and continued till the end of the month. Kicking-off the matches were Kovalam FC U15 and Fateh Hyderabad AFC U15. Fateh Hyderabad AFC was the stronger team, and they beat Kovalam FC 2-1. The second match of the day between Boca Juniors Football School U15 and Ozone Group FA U15 was an absolute whitewash. Ozone Group FA took the lead as early as the 5th minute when Satvir Singh scored. He went on to score a hat-trick, with two more goals in the 48th and 53rd minute. R. K. Chiranjan Singh also managed a hat-trick for Ozone Group FA with goals in the 16th, 62nd and 90th minute. Ajay Alex A and M. Vigneshawaran managed a brace each, while T. H. Imran Khan, Manunath T., Harpreet Singh, and Niraj Nikhil Parek all scored a goal each. Ozone Group FA walked away from the match with an easy 14-1 victory over Boca Juniors Football School. On the 19th, Bengaluru FC U15 thrashed Mahogany FC U15 7-0. Yaser Ahmed scored 4 of those 7 goals, Anirudh Achal scored 2 goals, and a goal by Vijay Thangavel in the 2nd minute started their winning streak.
On the 21st, Mahogany FC U15 played Fateh Hyderabad AFC U15, and the matched ended in a 2-2 draw. A few hours later, Ozone Group FA U15 took on Bengaluru FC U15. Goals by Ajay Alex A and Satvir Singh, and a brace by T. H. Imran Khan gave Ozone Group an easy 4-0 victory over Bengaluru FC. On the 22nd, Kovalam FC U15 hosted Boca Juniors Football School U15. Muhammad Lamiz AV, Roshan P Raj, and Alphin Walter managed a brace each, while a single goal by Sudheesh S ended the match 7-1 in favour of Kovalam FC.
On January 24th, Fateh Hyderabad AFC U15 played Ozone Group FA U15. Both teams scored a goal each, and the match ended in a draw. Later that evening, Mahogany FC U15 hosted Kovalam FC U15. Kovalam took the lead with 2 goals in the first half itself by Alphin Walter and Muhammad Lamiz AV. Mahogany managed to pull a goal back in the 55th minute, but two quick goals by Roshan P Raj in the 85th and 86th minute gave Kovalam FC a deserved 4-1 victory over the hosts. On the 25th, Boca Juniors Football School U15 suffered a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Bengaluru FC U15.
On January 27th, an own goal by Ajith K denied Bengaluru FC U15 a win, and the game ended in a 1-1 draw with Fateh Hyderabad AFC U15. Later that day, Mahogany FC U15 took on Boca Juniors Football School U15. Boca were quick to grab the lead when Pleasure Khakhlari scored in the 30th minute. Unfortunately, Mahogany FC’s K Lokesh scored in the 84th minute and 3rd minute of extra time, to give his team a 2-1 victory. On the 28th of January, Kovalam FC U15 handed Ozone Group FA U15 their first loss, beating them 2-1.
Groups F’s last 3 matches were played on January 30th and 31st. The first match on the 30th was between Fateh Hyderabad AFC U15 and Boca Juniors Football School U15. Their only shot at a win, Boca Juniors Football School fought hard, but ended up losing 5-1 to the hosts. Later on, Kovalam FC U15 played against Bengaluru FC U15. A goal by Muhammad Lamiz A. V. in the 5th minute gave Kovalam the lead, but they were unable to retain it. Goals by Shreyank Hebbar and Yaser Ahmed in the 20th and 64th minute respectively gave the visiting team a 1-goal advantage, and the match ended 2-1 in Bengaluru FC’s favour.
The last match for the group was on January 31st when Ozone Group FA U15 hosted Mahogany FC U15. Although Mahogany FC’s K Lokesh scored a hat-trick, an own goal by their Sam Palmoni helped Ozone Group FA with an easy 8-3 victory. Goals by Satvir Singh and Manjunath T., a brace by R. K. Chiranjan Singh, and a hat-trick by T. H. Imran Khan allowed Ozone Group FA U15 to finish this leg of the tournament on a high!
With all the matches for the first 6 zones done, here’s a quick look at the final standings: