FC Goa sealed their place in the quarter-finals of the Goa Police Cup with a comfortable 3-1 win over Youth Club of Manora at the Duler Stadium in Mapusa. Early strikes from Vasim Inamdar and HP Lalremruata helped the young Garus set the tone before a red card to their keeper further crippled Manora.
The Manora boys, though did show great heart to eke their way back into the game before halftime and certainly had a clear chance of pulling it all back in the second half. FC Goa, on the other hand, after creating a flurry of goalscoring opportunities finally sealed it late on with a strike from young forward Salgeo Dias in the 85th minute.
The Gaurs were off to a lighting start – scoring twice within the opening 16 minutes to take control of the game. For Manora, things would become even bleak a few minutes later when their goalkeeper, Md Tarique was shown a straight red for a reckless challenge on Vasim Inamdar, who had done brilliantly to go beyond the keeper and looked sure to score FC Goa’s third.
Despite dominating possession for much of the first half, FC Goa couldn’t muster a third. And late on, Deggie Cardozo’s boys were made to pay. Good work on the right from Md. Qais Khan saw the defender bully his way into the penalty box before cutting it back for substitute Denvil Fernandes to slot it past Viddhesh Bhonsle in the FC Goa goal.
Manora nearly pulled off an improbable comeback in the 53rd minute when Jonston Barbosa found himself in midfield and in space with Viddhesh Bhosle off his line following a miscommunication. Barbosa’s chipped shot from 40 odd yards out though missed the target by a whisker.
FC Goa’s numerical advantage and composed play in midfield helped the young Gaurs get a firm grip on the proceedings.
Deeshank Kunkalikar and Britto Pereira managed to provide the Gaurs glimpses of a coveted third. And even when the ball did roll into the net in the 77th minute, it got called off by the referee’s whistle.
The third goal finally did come in the 85th minute. It was another substitute, Salgeo Dias who made the most of a perfectly weighted through ball – as he glided past the backline before calmly slotting it past the keeper to seal FC Goa’s passage into the quarter-finals.
The FC Goa Developmental team will be back in action in the Goa Police Cup on Saturday, November 13 when they take on SESA Football Academy at the Parra Ground in the quarter-final. That game is scheduled for a 3:45 pm kickoff.