Sporting Clube de Goa beat Salgaocar FC 2 – 1 in the finals of GFA U-18 league to be crowned U-18 Champions of Goa. Goals from Shubert Pereira (42+) and Cayven Araujo (55’) sealed the victory for the Flaming Oranje while Liston Colaco (7’) got the solo goal for the Greens.
After winning the Goa Pro League & GFA U-20 TACA Goa Sporting Clube de Goa were more than determined to make their mark in the GFA U-18 finals against their cross town rivals Salgaocar FC. The high octane clash between the two saw some beautiful football played by either side entertaining a vocal crowd of about 200 odd supporters. The Greens drew the first blood of the match in the 7th minute through Liston Colaco who shot a perfect free kick beating Selwyn D’Souza from about 25 yards off. After conceding the early goal the Flaming Oranje settled in well with their trio Desmond Pereira, Schubert D’Costa and Ivon Costa causing an awful lot of trouble for the Salgaocar FC defense. Sporting played a fantastic one touch game and looked more comfortable than the greens throughout. At the other end skipper Schubert D’Costa and Brandon Gomes did an excellent job to contain Salgaocar’s explosive Liston. After creating numerous chances towards late in the second half Sporting broke the jinx when Ivon Costa made a dazzling run into the Salgaocar box, Stephen Alvares of SFC made a desperate sliding tackle trying to stop Ivon tripping him over. The referee had no hesitation in pointing towards the penalty spot. Schubert Pereira who stepped up and took the responsibility made not mistakes putting things on level terms just before the halftime whistle.
In the second half both teams made their intentions clear as they came all guns blazing in search for an early lead. Salgaocar FC created some good chances at the start specially when Robert send in a long ball to Devendra who got a brilliant first touch but the shot went above the nets. In the 55th minute Sporting won a corner kick, Cayven Araujao send in a perfect curling ball directed towards the nets which took a slight deflection off the greens defender but ended up in their own nets giving Flaming Oranje the crucial lead they were hunting. Subsequently Carry Vaz and Schubert Pereira displayed some jaw dropping skills pumping up the crowd with excitement. They both along with Desmond created at least 3 good chances in the second half only to be saved brilliantly by SFC custodian Antoniop Da Silva. At the other end Liston won a free kick for SFC exactly in the similar position where he had converted the first one. Hoping to repeat his feat Liston stepped up this time and shot a perfect ball towards Selwyn D’Souza who had learnt his lesson in the first half and punched the ball out of danger. Towards the end Sporitng players threw all they had into the game making it next to impossible for Salgaocar FC to find any space to operate. In the final minutes SFC players were running out of steam while the Oranje unit kept the ball possession and rotated it well within their half to run the clock down. The final whistle saw an ecstatic Sporting bench dash into the field to lift their hero Cayven Araujao who scored the winner.