Salgaocar FC edged past Sporting in the GFA Champions Trophy in an entertaining penalty shoot out winning it 7 – 6 at Duler Stadium, Mapusa on Sunday. At the end of 90 minutes both teams were locked at 1 goal each. Souvik Das (18’) gave the lead to Salgaocar FC scoring from the spot while Cajetan Fernandes (44’) put things on level in the similar fashion.
The first half was a fairly balanced affair with both teams adopting a cautious approach to the match. For the initial period play was concentrated in the mid-field. Barring a handful of attempts from either side both the goal keepers had a relaxed first quarter. In the 18thminute Salgaocar FC forward Liston Colaco made a brilliant run from the mid forcing Sporting defender Joseph Clemente to hand the ball within the box. The resulting penalty was converted by Souvik Das who competed his move from Sporting to the cross town rivals Salgaocar FC this season. After conceding the first goal Sporting stepped up their offense, Victorino Fernandes and Ganesh Thakur made some fantastic runs on either flanks but couldn’t break down a determined Salgaocar defense. In the 44th minute Balwinder Singh of Salgaocar brought down Ganesh Thakur who had made a fantastic run into the box gifting a penalty to Sporting. Cajetan Fernandes took the responsibility and slotted one in from the spot making it even. In the very next minute Clemente Joseph of Sporting brought down Aslon Oliveira in the box giving away a second penalty and also getting his marching orders for the second bookable offense. However Ravi Kumar had different plans and made a brilliant save denying Souvik Das his second goal. At the half time scores stayed level.
In the second half Sporting even with a men less on pitch put out a fantastic display of football with quick passing & keeping long spells of possession. Sporting’s Victorino Fernandes made some great runs into the box and came very close to scoring on two occasions. For Salgaocar FC Mackroy Peixote made the best attempt when he lofted a half volley and struck it neatly only to be denied by wood work. At the end of 90 minutes unable to break the dead lock the match progressed into penalty shoot out. Salgaocar FC edged past Sporting 7 – 6 in the penalty shoot out after Sporting’s Joseph Pereira who other wise had a brilliant match missed one in the sudden death.