Twitter reacts as Chennai City pip East Bengal for the I-League 2018-19 title
Chennai City FC clinched the I-League trophy after beating Minerva Punjab 3-1 at their home ground. In the other simultaneous game played at Kozhikode, East Bengal defeated Gokulam Kerala FC 2-1 but it wasn't enough to clinch the title as the Red and Golds also required the Coimbatore-based side to lose or draw the game.
Chennai City FC, playing without two of their key players Nestor Gordillo and Roberto Eslava due to a suspension and an injury, were behind as early as the third minute when Roland Bilala towered above the defenders to nod in Juan Quero's free-kick. The halftime scoreline read 1-0 against them but a brilliant display in the second half completely changed the complexion of the game.
Arashpreet touched the ball with his hand inside the box and Pedro Manzi made no error in equalizing for Chennai City FC. In the 69th minute, Gaurav Bora gave the home side the lead after connecting Sandro Rodriguez' corner-kick. From then on, it was all Chennai City FC who didn't show any signs of complacency.
The deathblow to East Bengal was dealt in the 93rd minute after Bora converted again from the corner. The final scoreline remained 3-1 as the players lifted Akbar Nawas and Gaurav Bora had water in his eyes while collecting the 'Hero of the Match' award.
When the season began, no one could have predicted that Chennai City FC would win the league. After all, they just saved themselves from relegation last season. But, the I-League had witnessed similar stories in the past two seasons with Aizawl FC and Minerva Punjab being the protagonists that time. And, this time it was Chennai City FC's turn.
East Bengal did their part but lady luck wasn't on their side. Twitterati heaped praise on the Chennai City FC side, that comprised of players coming from poor family backgrounds and the foreigners from that of the Spanish third division. Here is the quirkiest of the lot: