Dempo SC will have a tough nut to crack in the forthcoming round 18 match at Duler stadium on Sunday as they face Delhi’s ONGC who have landed in Goa with a 7 match unbeaten streak.
Not many would have considered ONGC to be a trouble maker for the top I-League teams at the beginning of the season, but with the arrival of their Head Coach Santosh Kashyap, ONGC seems to be the dark horse of every I League round after having beaten the mighty East Bengal (1-0) and Salgaocar FC (1-0) at their home ground at Ambedkar stadium in Delhi.
Dempo SC coach Armando Colaco is aware about the recent hike in form of the away team and will be preparing for the occasion accordingly, “Although there are injuries to some of our players, we are still banking on good bench strength. We are at a crucial stage now and would like to concentrate on every match. I respect my opponents and will not take any team lightly. We will have a plan and will try to stick to it.”
Among the injured are Mahesh Gawli and Ryuji Sueoka who have muscle injuries and could be missing from the list on Sunday. Dempo’s new signing Prathamesh Maulingkar may get a nod in the starting eleven. Clifford, Climax, Peter and Godwin are reported to be Match fit and could feature in the playing eleven. Young Rowilson Rodrigues, Cresson Antao and Samir Naik will shoulder responsibilities in the defence as Koko Sakibo and Joaquim Abranches hunt for the goals. Joaquim Abranches in particular is in a fine form as he currently leads Indian goal scorers in I-league with 6 goals.
In the meanwhile ONGC will be breathing their last in the current season as they are reported to be dropped for the next season of I-League. ONGC has failed to register them as a separate legal entity as per AFC rules and hence the AIFF has decided to allot their slot to a city based franchisee team.
Last 5 Matches: W (Won), D (Draw), L (Lost)
Dempo: W D L D W
ONGC: W W W D W
Probable Line Ups:
Dempo SC: Shubhasish (GK), Rowilson, Cresson, Samir, Debabrata, Romeo, Climax, Clifford, Godwin, Koko and Abranches
ONGC: Rehnesh (GK), Odeola, Robin Gurung, Wahid Sali, Bimal Minz, Kailash Patil, Katsumi Yusa, Sachin Gawas, Jatin Bisht, Joel Sequiro and Lalwampuia