A new season of Meghalaya’s top football competition has begun with a new league sponsor coming in – Gionee Mobiles..

Three matches have already been played, and the competition this year has become tougher with each team aiming to win the Gionee Shillong Premier League.

Defending Champions, Shillong Lajong FC who bagged the top honours in 2014 and 2015 will look to grab their third when they begin their Gionee SPL campaign against Randajied United FC on 22nd August at the JN Stadium at 3:30pm.

Just like previous seasons, Lajong will field a young squad with no foreign players in the team. Very recently, the team played the Independence Cup in Aizawl as part of their pre-season preparatory camp. They topped Group B and remained undefeated to reach the semifinals stage but lost to Aizawl FC 3-2 in the extra time.

Speaking to head coach, Thanhboi Singto, about the first match, he said, “It will be a good test for the young team. This year we have registered ten U 18 players in the 30 member squad.

There is talent in the very youthful squad. We need to improve and develop in every game. This will be a great opportunity for some of the youngsters.”

He further said, “The trip to Aizawl gave us a chance to build on combinations and also to give us match time.

It will be tougher this season as we will not have Vishal, Rupert and Sana who were our mainstay last year when we won the League. But we will approach the League with confidence and give our best as we have always done.”

An interesting encounter awaits the football spectators of Shillong on Monday as the defending champions of the Gionee Shillong Premier League will lock horns with another tough contender in the league, Rangdajied United FC. Both teams will be eager to grab first wins from this crucial encounter.

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