Curtains on the 57th edition of the Subroto Cup International Football Tournament came down when Club Atletico Paraneanse deservingly lifted the Junior Boys (U-17) trophy after beating Army Boys Coy, Bengaluru, 1-0 in the final at the Dr. Ambedkar Stadium here today.
Bruno struck the goal four minutes into the match and the Brazilians just defended it for the next 66 minutes to romp home winners.
Chief guest Air Marshal M.K. Malik, who is also the vice-chairman of the Subroto Mukherjee Sports Education Society, presented the trophy to the winners.
The Army Boys will return to their base with the satisfaction of contesting well against a ‘professional’ side and the Bengaluru boys were not at all disgraced in their defeat. Some of their boys can still make it to the next edition and have a fresh shot at the title.
Cheered by former Brazilian midfielder Rivaldo, the guest of honour at the final, the teams were keen to do well in front of the legend. Perhaps, this thinking from camp made the match somewhat boring as one failed to notice the wholesome Brazilian flair from Atletico. On the other hand, the Army Boys had their opponents’ reputation in mind and it clogged their all-out attack.
TRICKY AND CALCULTED
To begin with, the Club side from Brazil was not only tricky but also calculative and it made cautious moves with heavy man-to-man marking of their opponents. This made the Army Boys’ movement restricted and even otherwise they lost ball possession more often than not. This was their undoing and they found the going increasingly tough to find the target.
This was the kind of situation the boys from abroad were waiting for and pressed home the advantage to find their first goal when Bruno cut pass a few Army Boys defenders crowding the box and slotted in the goal within four minutes of the start.
Indeed, the Bengaluru boys tried hard to equalize but they were stoutly thwarted by the four men wall. Even after change of end, their fortunes never changed and the Army Boy will carry some sweet-bitter memory of the tournament. For them, it was so near and yet so far.
The entire duration of the match saw just one booking as defender Alex’s foul warranted a yellow card. Otherwise, it was a neat game understandably because fewer attempts were made at the goal.
Several guests from the All India Football Federation, Delhi Dynamos and the Sports Authority of India graced the occasion and cheered the players.
FAIR PLAY AWARD
The Government School boys from Mizoram got the fair play award while Marcos of the Brazilian side was adjudged the best coach. Another award went the way of the visitors when S. Kennedy was voted as the best player. However, Dip Majumdar of Army Boys received the most promising player award.
A panel of members also decided on the boys and girls that will receive scholarships.