Durand Cup: FC Goa lift maiden title with 1-0 win against Mohammedan
IANS

Durand Cup: FC Goa lift maiden title with 1-0 win against Mohammedan

Kolkata, October 3, 2021

FC Goa are the new Durand Cup owners.

The Gaurs defeated Mohammedan Sporting Club 1-0 owing to a set-piece goal scored by their captain and Man of the match Eduardo Bedia in the 105th minute in extra time at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (VYBK) here on Sunday.

This is the first time that FC Goa have won the Durand Cup and for coach Juan Ferrando Fenoll it was his first-ever trophy on Indian soil.

The winners, along with two rolling trophies of the Durand Cup and the Shimla Trophy, were also awarded the President’s Cup for permanent keeping. They also received a cheque of Rs 40 lakh as prize money.

The final kicked off on a lively note in front of over 34,000 spectators with both Mohammedan Sporting and Goa going on the attack from the word go. Though both teams were looking to attack but they failed to keep possession for longer durations.

The first attack of the match came from Marcus Joseph in the third minute but it was wayward. Soon after, Goa created a chance but a mix-up between Nemil and Romario in the box led to an easy save for the Mohammedan keeper.

As the half started to progress, the temperature started to increase and the foul count also started to increase. Mohammedan was at the receiving end of the cards as they received three yellow cards within a span of 17 minutes with the names Azharuddin Mallick, Nikola Stojanovic, and Shaher Shaheen going into the book.

The match was slowly starting to open up now, as chances were being created more often but none of them was being converted. A sudden moment of uproar came at the VYBK in the 35th minute when a shot from Milan Singh went flying into the goal from a distance but a foul was called by the referee just before the shot was taken and the disappointment of the crowd was clearly visible.

For Goa, Romario had the best chance of the half when the defence was completely foxed by a cross from Sanson Pereira from the left flank but Romario sent the shot wide of the goal post.

The first half ended with the scores tied at 0-0.

The second half saw Goa dominating possession but the same wasn’t resulting in concrete chances as they were losing the ball far too easily in the final third. In the meantime, Mohammedan finally made their first change of the match bringing on Brandon Vanlalremdika for Azharuddin Mallick, who was already on a yellow card. Goa also made their first change in the 85th minute with Redeem Tlang coming on for Romario Jesuraj.

The last few minutes saw some moments of excitement. Mohammedan made some good runs down the left flank in the last five minutes but again failed to make them count. In the injury time, Redeem Tlang came close to scoring the first goal but the angle was too steep and the ball went across the face of the goal. With scores tied at 0-0 at the end of the regulation time, the final went into extra time.

While the first half of the extra-time was seeming that it will end goalless yet again, it was the magician from FC Goa, Eduardo Bedia who came up with the goods. The FC Goa captain scored from a fantastic free-kick awarded just outside the Mohammedan box in the 105th minute owing to a foul by Milan Singh.

Though Mohammedan was desperate for a goal in the second half of the extra time they seemed out of sorts much like their performance in the regulation time. It seemed that Goa will have no issue sealing the deal but a moment of scare came for the Gaurs with just 2 minutes to go in extra time as a Nikola Stojanovic shot from distance demanded a flying save from the Goa 'keeper Naveen Kumar.

Runner-up Award: Mohammedan Sporting Club – INR 20 Lakh

Golden Glove Award: Naveen Kumar (FC Goa) – INR 1 Lakh

Golden Boot Award: Marcus Joseph (Mohammedan Sporting Club) – INR 1 Lakh

Golden Ball Award: Eduardo Bedia (FC Goa) – INR 1 Lakh

Losing Semi-Finalists Award:

1. FC Bengaluru United – INR 5 Lakh

2. Bengaluru FC – INR 5 Lakh

NNN

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