Former Golden Eagle Amar Haldankar scored an own goal to hand his former side the win…
Dempo Sports Club edged out Calangute Association as they registered a solitary goal win in the inaugural match of the first edition of the AWES Cup played at a fully packed Duler football Stadium earlier today.
Dempo came into this match with a 4-1 defeat against FC Goa in their last friendly match, while Calangute were defeated by Dempo in their previous friendly match. Dempo were seen with lots of changes in the squad as newly appointed head coach Samir Naik introduced recently signed defender Mathew Gonsalves, Olan Chandran, Yogesh Kadam and striker Latesh Mandrekar in the starting XI. While Calangute’s coach Alex Alvares made sure that his newly signed player Myron Fernandes, Joston Pereira and Amar Haldankar make the cut.
The match was just four minutes old when Calangute could have easily taken the lead but unmarked Joston failed to control his volley from inside the box as the ball went wide for a goal-kick, off Myron’s perfect cross.
At the other end, the Golden Eagles took the lead through an own goal from Amar. Dempo defender Mario Mascarenhas was trying to find his teammate in the box with a curling cross but the former Dempo man deflected it into his own goal making it 1-0 for the opponents.
Down by a goal, Calangute came close twice to scoring but off target shooting restricted them from finding an equaliser. First, Myron Mendes’ blistering free-kick from just outside the box sailed over the crossbar. A few minutes later, Omkar Satelkar failed to connect from close range off Domnic Fernandes’ fine cross from the right. Later, Versal Viegas’ overhead shot from inside the box went over the crossbar.
In the last few minutes of the first session, Dempo once again tried to control the game with possession football however they could not breakthrough Calangute’s defense.
On crossing over, Calangute took 10 more minutes to settle down and came up with a series of attempts on a goal but Dempo’s defense line stood strong to keep their side safe. In one of these, Bonny Niasso cut past few opponents in his run from the halfway line and made a perfect cross to Myron in the box, whose header was nicely blocked by the Dempo keeper Agnelo Gomes.
Dempo replied with a quick attack when Mario made a darting run on the right wing and found well placed Beevan but the striker failed to beat Calangute keeper Jason D’Mello.
Barsel was once again in action for Calangute when he sent a fine free-kick in the box to Joston but the Calangute lad failed to put power in his header as the Dempo keeper easily collected the ball. With just 20 minutes remaining, Calangute coach Alvares replaced his forward Omkar with Jayesh Chopdekar. However, the substitute failed to deliver to the coach’s expectations.
In the last few minutes of the match, the beach side club tried hard to find the leveller but Dempo defenders stood tall to make sure that the Golden Eagles take all three points.
Dempo coach Sameer Naik was happy after registering the first win of his coaching career and said “It is always great to start with a win. I am happy with the performance of my boys. Though we did not score many goals, they completely controlled the match.”