Durand Cup: Goa thrash Delhi FC 5-1, storm into semi finals

Harpal Singh Bedi

Kalyani, 24 September: FC Goa outplayed Delhi FC 5-1 to storm into the semifinals of the 130th Durand Football at the Kalyani Stadium on Friday. 

For the winners who led 3-0 at halftime, Devendra Murgaokar, Muhammed Nemil, Brandon Fernandez, Leander D’Cunha, and Romario Jesuraj scored a goal each while  Nikhil Mali reduced the margin for the losers.

Delhi started well in the first quarter creating quite a few opportunities for themselves. Anwar Ali and Willis Deon Plaza had their chances at scoring but failed to convert each time.

It was all Goa post that. In the 15th minute, Devendra Murgaokar scored the first goal and his fourth of the tournament to put the Gaurs ahead. Muhammed Nemil scored another three minutes later.

Delhi had chances in the remaining part of the first half but it was good work from Goa’s defence that kept them at bay.

Brandon Fernandesthen lobbed a curler from the left flank over Delhi keeper Lovepreet in added time, to give Goa a big cushion of 3 goals at halftime.

Delhi looked like they came with a plan in the second half and showed some resilience initially but luck was not smiling at them on the day. 

They did pull one back in the 82nd minute Nikhil Mali scored a smart goal after an even smarter Willis Plaza dummy inside the Goa box, spoiling the clean-sheet of Dheeraj under the Gaur’s bar.

It took Goa just a couple of minutes to regain the three-goal cushion as Leander D’ Cunha scored from an overhead kick which did not quite catch his foot where he would have liked it to. Alexander RomarioJesuraj scored the fifth and final goal in injury time to seal the deal for  Goa.

Leander D’ Cunha was adjudged the Man of the Match for his match-winning performance 

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