Chennaiyin FC have made it to the finals of the Indian Super League for the second time in four seasons, after a 3-0 (4-1 on aggregate) win over Goa on Tuesday.
Jeje Lalpekhlua who ended his seven-goal game drought, was the star of the match scoring a brace with a goal in-between by local lad Dhanpal Ganesh.
Like the first leg Goa had the lion’s share of posession, with Chennaiyin struggling to break free from their half in the initial exchanges, but the homeside’s defence was tight.
The positive start for the visitors ended after they were stunned by two goals in quick succession. Jeje scored first in the 26th minute after he headed home a simple cross from the left. And with another header 3 minutes later from Ganesh, Chennaiyin were two goals up (3-1 agg).
Jeje then wrapped things up in the 90th minute when Gavilan’s through-ball was not controlled by Ali. Jeje, through on goal, slotted it past Karanjit to end any hopes Goa had.
After the match Chenniayin’s head coach John Gregory said that his team still have a lot of work to do if they have to clinch the title this season.
“We haven’t done anything yet. We’ve just reached the final. Looking forward to the weekend now. The emotions of reaching the final might hit me a bit later possibly. It’s quite incredible feeling really,” he said.
“I still remember meeting the team first and we’ve built some trust and understanding and the result is that we’ve reached the final. When you go to the final, you have to make sure you win it. People talk about enjoying the final, but you enjoy it only if you win it.”
Chennaiyin now face Bengaluru FC in the final on March 17 at Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bangalore
This is the first time in the competitions four editions that the two teams who finished first and second on the league table will come face to face in the summit clash.