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Delhi Dynamos FC’s Lallianzuala Chhangte says ISL club ‘can beat any side’ ahead of Super Cup

Delhi Dynamos FC winger Lallianzuala Chhangte believes his side’s form in the second half of Indian Super League (ISL) augurs well for a good run in the Super Cup. Delhi feature in the qualifiers starting on Thursday. The final rounds begin on March 31.

football Updated: Mar 14, 2018 19:33 IST
Shayne Dias
Shayne Dias
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Indian SUper League,ISL,Super Cup
The emergence of Lallianzuala Chhangte as a regular in the playing XI was one of the few positives for Delhi Dynamos FC, who ended the Indian Super League (ISL) in eighth position. (ISL / SPORTZPICS)

To say Delhi Dynamos FC had a disappointing Indian Super League (ISL) 2017-18 is an understatement. Miguel Angel Portugal’s side played attractive football that was praised by many, but they only got a good string of results under their belt after their chances of making the playoffs were gone.

Thus, it is imperative they have a good showing in the Super Cup, starting with the qualifiers on Thursday. The final rounds begin on March 31.

Delhi, having finished outside the top six, will play a qualifier against the relegated Churchill Brothers on Thursday. Should they win, they will face Mohun Bagan in the round of 16.

However, Dynamos winger Lallianzuala Chhangte fancies their chance thanks to their late season resurgence. “We played some of the best football in the ISL in the later half of the season, so I am confident we can beat any side in India at this point. The arrival of players like (Manuel) Arana and (Xabier) Irureta also gave us a lot of confidence,” Chhangte said in an interview.

“We want to correct all the mistakes we made earlier in the season, and what better way to do so than winning a Cup,” he added.

The emergence of Chhangte as a first-team regular was a major positive for Delhi Dynamos FC who ended the league stages of the ISL eighth. Chhangte credits coach Portugal for improving his game.

“He (Portugal) is a very good coach. I am happy that he gave me so many chances this season. I have previously struggled for regular game time but this was a fruitful season for me. The coach identified areas I needed to work on, like my first touch and ball control. Even after the training sessions got over, he and the coaches came to me and spent time identifying how I can better my skills,” he said.

He is only 20 years old, and there is plenty of work to be done before Chhangte can be considered a finished product. The speedy winger has identified one area he wants to work on.

“One specific thing (I want to improve) is consistency. I need to get goals and assists on a regular basis. I am putting in lot of work, but it is important to make sure I can help the team score more.”

Chhangte only recorded three goals and three assists this season. But Delhi Dynamos never lost a game in which Chhangte scored or assisted, demonstrating that he has the ability to directly influence a game. Only he needs to do it more often. Delhi will bank on the youngster coming good if they are to have a decent run in the Super Cup.

First Published: Mar 14, 2018 19:29 IST