The Gaurs held Qatari heavyweights Al Rayyan to a goalless draw on Wednesday night.
FC Goa cliched the first ever points for an Indian side in the AFC Champions League Group Stage with a gut-wrenching and tenacious display against Qatari heavyweights Al Rayyan. The Laurent Blanc coached side was kept at bay for most of the game, with Boli’s one close range header being their best chance in the contest. For Gaurs, chances were not so forthcoming, their only shot on target coming from a long-range Romario effort.
Take a look at how the FC Goa players performed.
Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem – 7.5
The youngster was solid with very good stops in the first half. The keeper also looked comfortable on the ball at moments. The second half proved to be challenging to the Gaurs, in a defensive aspect but the 20-year-old rose to the challenge and made a crucial save to deny Yohan Boli from close range. His three saves were enough to justify his inclusion in the starting lineup.
James Donachie – 6.5
Was solid defensively but looked shaky while playing from the back, especially during the first half. His mistakes nearly cost a goal on two occasions but he grew into his role in the second half to keep the incessant Al-Rayyan attack at bay. The Australian defender was especially adept at dealing with second chances, rebounds and deflected balls.
Ivan Gonzalez – 7.0
Looked more assured of the two centerbacks. He looked very comfortable on the ball and was very alert to the threat of Yohan Boli as well as the marauding runs of Brahimi. The Spaniard made two key interceptions as well as three crucial tackles. Took a needless yellow card due to dissent shown towards the referee.
Seriton Fernandes – 7.0
The full back was like a perpetual machine on the field. He was supporting Roamrio whenever the opening came but was aware of the threats from Muftah in the wide areas. He looked solid in possession and was used as the outlet more than Sanson. He registered three crosses but failed to find the target.
Sanson Pereira – 6.5
Defensively, Sanson did his job to the dot. He made sure that the opposition full-back Aeldin was kept in check preventing any real forays from his side. However, he was unable to support the attack to a similar extent as Seriton and was more or less passive on that end of the field. His touches were mostly concentrated on the defensive half.
Edu Bedia – 7.0
As the captain, Edu Bedia was at the forefront of the effort and energy required to frustrate the more superior opposition. Although, there was a lack of creativity, due to Al Rayyan being a higher quality opposition, he performed his role in the middle of the pitch, stifling attacks as well as the dealing with a dangerous Yacine Brahimi.
The Spaniard won 100% of both ground (2) and aerial (1) duels in a match that was grueling from start to finish. He deserves plaudits for the overall team effort as well.
Glan Martins – 7.0
Played the role of a box-to-box midfielder to perfection. Whenever Edu Bedia felt like he had lot to handle, Glan was there to help him tidy up things. He also showed a confident, mature approach on the ball bar one scary moment in the first half when his pass went awry. Overall, it was a solid and tenacious 90 minutes, from the winter signing.
Alexander Jesuraj – 6.5
Romario displayed a well-rounded effort in the first half. One of the few players who was active on both ends of the pitch for the Gaurs. Romario has been a favourite of Ferrando during the ISL campaign and he should great maturity this time around as well. He had a peach of cross in the first half, which Pandita failed to connect with as well as a stinging shot that Younes palmed away.
Brandon Fernandes – 7.0
His outlet balls from deep were accurate as usual. Was a key component of the disciplined pressing system but failed to be his creative self during the breakaway moments. The FC Goa ace registered 97% passing accuracy against Al Rayyan and his four key interceptions were crucial in restricting the Qatari attack. However, the lack of offensive output will need to improve the next game.
Jorge Ortiz – 6.0
The lack of a clear focal point clearly affected his game. He looked to be clueless while holding the ball and had very little penetration, with his touches being limited to the middle of the park. However, Ortiz was solid while pressing. But made a very crucial mistake in the first half that almost lead to an Al-Rayyan opener.
Ishan Pandita – 5.5
A big no-show in terms of offensive influence. Pandita was a relevant figure in the stout defense and subsequent pressure from the Gaurs, but failed to make any real impact offensively on the pitch. He looked physically outmatched.
Saviour Gama – N/A
Was introduced as a defensive stopper to counter the increased fervor in the Al-Rayyan attack. Did decently well but did not play long enough for a rating.
Devendra Muragokar – N/A
Had minimal influence to the game, as he got close to eight minutes of game time only.
Amarjit Singh – N/A
Came late on and failed to make any contributions.