When defending champions FC Goa take on Jamshedpur FC in the Durand Cup 2022 on Friday, they would look to build on the momentum gained from their first win of the campaign in their last game against Indian Air Force. The young Gaurs, who have sent a youthful side to the competition began their campaign with a loss before their win in the last game.
Deggie Cardozo’s boys are currently placed third in Group A, behind Mohammedan SC and Bengaluru FC, who have six points apiece. And now, a win against the Steelmen of Jamshedpur will help FC Goa also take their tally to six points, while also improving their goal difference which could prove crucial.
The clash between Goa and Jamshedpur will be held at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK), popularly known as Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, and is slated for a 06:00 pm kick-off.
The task ahead
Mathematically, the Goa-based club can ensure qualification to the knockout stages if they win both their remaining matches – against Jamshedpur FC on Friday and against Bengaluru FC next Wednesday. While it is a tough task, head coach Deggie Cardozo remains hopeful about his team’s chances.
“The way I see it, we know exactly what we need to do to qualify. We have been preparing accordingly and we hope to do well tomorrow. We did not get off to a fine start at the Salt Lake Stadium a few days ago, but we’re confident that it won’t happen again,” Cardozo said.
“We’ve had a few days to prepare since our last match. The boys got ample time to recover and return to training. Our players are all fit and raring to go, and are aiming for nothing less than three points.”
Friday’s opponent Jamshedpur FC began their Durand Cup campaign on August 17, with a defeat against Bengaluru FC. Youngster Rishi Rajput’s goal was one of the many highlights for the Men of Steel in the game.
Their second outing wasn’t any better as Carlos Santamarina’s side went down 3-0 at the hands of Mohammedan SC. Thus, one can expect Jamshedpur to play with a chip on their shoulders as they look to make an impact in the tournament.
“The loss against Mohammedan felt bad, because we knew we could have done better. But we’re no longer thinking about what happened so far. The focus is on the task ahead,” midfielder Lalremruata HP said.
Having faced Jamshedpur FC four months earlier in the Reliance Foundation Development League (RFDL), forward Delton Colaco has a fairly good idea about Friday’s opponent. “Back then, we lost but it was completely down to individual mistakes. We, as a team, have progressed a lot since then. Hence, I’m confident that we’ll do well tomorrow and secure the second win of our Durand Cup campaign,” he said.
Report- Pratyusha Mukherjee
Source: FC GOA