The Greens now have 10 points and jumped to second in the league standings.
Salgaocar FC edged past Velsao Sports & Cultural Club 2-1 in the Goa Professional League match played at Duler Stadium on Thursday. After a goalless draw in the first half, Velsao opened their tally through James Fernandes in the 74th minute. However, two late strikes from substitute Chaitan Komarpant (83rd minute) and Sidharth Kundaikar (90+3’ minute) ensured all three points for Salgaocar.
Velsao, who had lost to Vasco in the last match made only one change to their side. Coach Eban Mesquita brought back James Fernandes in the starting XI. Salgaocar coach Levino Pereira, on the other hand, made four changes to the side which defeated Dempo SC in the last match. Mackroy Peixote and Krishnanath Shirodkar made their first start of the season, while Saeesh Halarnkar and Antush Moniz also returned for the Greens.
It was a cagey affair in the first half. However, in between, Salgaocar had a couple of opportunities to break the deadlock. They came close to scoring in the 27th minute when Stephen Alvares tried his luck from the right flank. However, his powerful right-footer missed the target narrowly. Another opportunity went in vain in the 42nd minute. This time Stephen sent a perfect free-kick to Daryl Costa, whose back-heel narrowly missed the target.
Velsoa were the first to take a shy at goal after the restart. With an hour gone, Cyrus Noronha fired a long ranger. It was, however, fisted over the crossbar by Salgaocar keeper Jason D’Mello. They had another opportunity nine minutes later. Cajetan Fernandes sent a through pass to James in the box, whose fierce shot was once again saved by Jason.
Finally, after a couple of attacks, Velsao managed to break the deadlock in the 74th minute. A weak back-pass from Salgaocar defender Saurabh Patil was intercepted by James, who slotted the ball past an onrushing Jason to give Velsao the lead.
The Greens refused to give up and came back strongly. They eventually managed to level the scores in the 83rd minute through substitute Chaitan Komarpant. He cut past a few opponents on his way and clinically finished the ball in the net making it 1-1.
The remainder of the game witnessed an end-to-end affair. However, neither team could find the breakthrough and it looked like the match would end in a draw. But, substitute Siddharth Kundaikar found the winner in added-time. He headed home from close range off Selwyn Miranda’s cross to book all three points for the Greens.