Dempo Sports Club stormed to a 2-1 win over Salgaocar Sports Club in the curtain raising Charity Match to herald the opening of the new season of Goan football.
The match, held at the Raia ground, was in aid of former Dempo Sports Club player Prakash Naik who is recovering in hospital.
Dempo coach Armando Colaco started with an All-Goan lineup handing Tyson Caiado the gloves. Cresson Antao- captain for the day partnered Shallum Pires in central defense, while Valeriano Rebello and Jessel Carneiro started at right and left back respectively. Young Mandar Rao Dessai started on the left flank together with Peter Carvalho and Godwin Franco in the middle and Romeo Fernandes on the right. Joy Ferrao and Cliffton Gonsalves were the two marksmen.
The match started cautiously with both sets of players taking time to adjust to the very heavy conditions. The slippery outfield made it difficult for Dempo to play their passing brand of football. Nevertheless they controlled the game beautifully with Peter Carvalho and Godwin Franco playing well in midfield.
Salgaocar had twoforeign players in their ranks- Namibian Quinton Jacobs and captain Luciano Sabrosa and also handed debuts to Collin Abranches, Anthony D’Souza and goalkeeper Pawan Kumar. The opening twenty five minutes saw mostly midfield battles except for a rasping shot by Milagres Gonsalves that was well saved by Tyson Caiado and a miss by Cliffton Gonsalves. But on the stroke of half an hour, Cliffton Gonsalves made amends for his earlier miss when he tapped in a Peter Carvalho cross that was fumbled by Salgaocar keeper Pawan Kumar. Five minutes later, Joy Ferrao broke clear of Luciano Sabrosa but he failed to get his shot on target.
Eight minutes into the second half, Dempo doubled their lead when a free kick was headed against the post by Joy Ferrao but Nicolau Borges was just at the right place at the right time to smash in the rebound. Substitute Sandesh Gadari making his Salgaocar debut, missed an open header, denying Salgaocar a chance to make it a frantic last twenty minutes for Dempo. Salgaocar did get one back though through a brilliant curling free kick from Quinton Jacobs, but it was too little too late for the Greens.
Churchill Brothers patron Mr. Churchill Alemao gave away the runners up trophy to Salgaocar while Velim MLA and GFA Executive Committee member Mr. Benjamin Silva, who was also the Chief Guest, gave away the winner’s trophy to Cresson Antao of Dempo Sports Club.
Meanwhile Dempo Sports Club will begin their defense of the Goa League against Vasco Sports Club on 2nd September, 2012 at the PJN Stadium in Margao.