Brian Faria in his first season for Dempo Sports Club, emerged the match-winner as the Golden Eagles started their Second Division I-League campaign with a solitary goal victory over FC Goa Reserves at Dempo Football Academy ground, Ela-Old Goa.
Brian headed home off a searching ball into the box by Kritikesh Gadekar following a corner-kick towards the fag end of first half as Dempo played circumspectly to begin with against an onrushing FC Goa; and built a grip on the proceedings after the setpiece success.
In fact, Dempo could have inflated the scoreline further when Beneston Barretto failed twice to be clinical in front of the rival goal at the stroke of half time.
FC Goa goalkeeper Hansel Coelho acrobatically parried out a powerful strike by Necio Fernandes deep into the second half. Brian missed a chance to double the score when he had a lot of space and time to shoot but failed to hit the target from the top of the penalty area.
FC Goa hardly tested the rival goalie Antonio Dylan da Silva but had their share of opportunities beginning with Delton Colaco’s run down the left wing only to shoot waywardly. He was also in an offside position on another of FC Goa’s quick attack. Jordan Borges scuffed his attempt from the box after being teed by Delton from the left. However, Antonio Dylan did make an important save off a powerful drive by Velroy Fernandes in the second half.
Dempo SC coach Samir Naik was pleased with the result. “It’s special to win as first game is always difficult. Hopefully, we will continue the good work,” said the legendary former Dempo and India defender.
Expressing satisfaction about the execution of the strategy, Samir said: “We had planned to stay back and not to press them higher to start with. According to the plan, we got our results.”
A couple of important aspects of Dempo plan? “keeping the shape and hitting FC Goa when they were pushing up. Shifting the ball from flank to flank, as we knew they were pressing us higher and there was space behind the defenders,” explained Samir.
Brian Faria from Quepem, was “very happy” with his goal in the first match itself. “I have to score more goals and help the team win this league,” said the 26-year-old former FC Goa Developmental team player.
Dempo SC will next play Hyderabad FC Reserves on March 25 in Bengaluru.