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Lajong all set for Salgaocar challenge

SHILLONG: The JN Stadium in Shillong is all set for an exciting encounter as hosts Shillong Lajong and a cornered Salgaocar FC lock horns with an aim to bolster their image in the Round 3 Hero I-League match here on Thursday evening.
While Lajong come to the tie on the back of a 3-0 drubbing at the hands of Bengaluru FC, Salgaocar are yet to open their account after back to back defeats against Mumbai and Mohun Bagan.
Hosts Lajong had played out a goalless draw against Mumbai at the JN Stadium Shillong in their first encounter of the season and after an indifferent outing against Bengaluru in the away match, the Reds would look to settle for nothing less than full three points when they take on the Goan rivals on Thursday.
“We did create chances and had shots at the goal (against Bengaluru), but they weren’t good enough. Come Thursday we have to be better in the defence. The pressure will also be on the strikers. We need to stop conceding goals and our strikers need to deliver,” said Lajong coach Thangboi Singto during a pre-match press conference.
Lajong would also look to their Brazilian strikers Uilliams and Fabio to deliver.
Salgaocar, meanwhile, would look to bank on the experience of new recruits and former Royal Wahingdoh men Jackichand Singh and Seityasen Singh to give them their first points of the season.
Jacki looked good against Mumbai and would be eager to perform in front of his “home crowd” in Shillong.
Coach Malcolm Thomson, however, is wary of the tough task that awaits his boys in Shillong which has been witnessing rain and cold weather over the last two days.
“It’s going to be a tough game. However, if 7-8 of our boys can have a good outing then there is no reason why we should not win,” he said.
The former Scottish football player also confirmed that Jacki and Seitya shall feature in Thursday’s encounter against Lajong.
Another former RWFC player Reagen Singh also features in the Salgaocar side and it would be interesting to see if all three find place in the starting XI Thursday.
For Lajong, Pritam Singh is a doubtful starter.

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