PANAJI: FC Goa were held to a 1-1 draw by Churchill Brothers SC in Goa Football Association’s Selvel Goa Professional League at Duler Stadium, Mapusa today

The first half started with a bang for FC Goa as they rushed into an early lead thanks to a brilliant finish from Sarineo Fernandes inside the first ten minutes. The ball was played in by Ivon Costa from midfield, and it was Sarineo on the charge from the left who controlled it and calmly slotted it past Debnath Mondal in the Churchill goal.

The young Gaurs controlled much of the first half thereafter, with Sarineo looking among the most dangerous attacking threats. A free-kick from his boots threatened to double the lead in the 35th minute of the game, but much to his dismay, it went inches over the bar.

Despite the first half dominance, Churchill managed to equalise just before the half-time break, as a mistake at the back allowed Afdal Varikkodan to steal the ball inside the Gaurs penalty box and slot the ball into the net to make it 1-1.

That meant it was all to play for in the second period. The game restarted with a bang as a poor challenge from Rajender Singh of Churchill on Vasim Inamdar saw him sent off for a second yellow card, with the referee in no doubt about the severity of the tackle.

The ten men of Churchill were then opened up at the back and conceded a string of chances. It started with a mistake from goalkeeper Mondal that nearly saw Joybert Almeida head home for his second in as many starts. The forward though saw his header cleared off the line.

Substitute Romeo Fernandes soon lashed one shot over the bar while Vasim missed a golden opportunity moments later after a terrific cross from Sarineo Fernandes to put the Gaurs in the lead.

Mondal had to be at his flying best with just over ten minutes to go as he saved an effort from Velroy Fernandes, keeping his side just about in the game.

Unfortunately for the Gaurs, their continued efforts to find a winner turned out to be in vain as Churchill held on for a draw when all was said and done.

The season’s first draw for FC Goa sees them move to 13 points in the GPL table from their 7 games, still three points behind league leaders Salgaocar FC who have a game in hand. Churchill meanwhile remained seventh on the table with 10 points from their 8 games.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here