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Durand Cup 2022: FC Goa begin title defence against Mohammedan Sporting SC

FC Goa

Bengaluru, August 15: FC Goa beging their Durand Cup title defence by taking on Mohammedan SC in the opening match of the 131st edition of one of the oldest football tournament's in India.

The match will literally be a repeat of Durand Cup 2021 final in which the Gaurs had the last laugh.

The Durand Cup 2022 lung opener clash to be held at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan (previoulsy known as the Salt Lake Stadium) in Kolkata is slated for a 6pm kick-off.

Durand Cup 2022: Schedule, Results, Teams, Groups, Points Table, Telecast & Live Streaming InfoDurand Cup 2022: Schedule, Results, Teams, Groups, Points Table, Telecast & Live Streaming Info

The Gaurs arrived at Kolkata for the tournament on Sunday ahead of the club's third campaign at the Durand Cup, having previously played in the 2019 and 2021 editions.

So far, the club have remained unbeaten in the tournament and would look to extend their solid run.

Durand Cup 2022: FC Goa ready for title defenceDurand Cup 2022: FC Goa ready for title defence

Third time

Third time

This will be the third time that the Gaurs are participating in the Durand Cup, coming on the back of a stellar campaign last year that saw them remain undefeated throughout the tournament.

In the Durand Cup 2021 finals played at the Vivekananda Yuva Bharati Krirangan, Edu Bedia's 105th-minute strike helped the Men in Orange overcome the challenge posed by Kolkata-based Mohammedan to lay their hands on the trophy for the first time.

Development squad

Development squad

Deggie Cardozo, the head coach of Goa's Durand Cup squad is upbeat about the team's chances in the competition. "Our players have trained well and are in good spirits. They're aware that playing in the prestigious tournament is a good opportunity for them, and are hence keen to create an impact," he told FC Goa Media.

"Our training session on Monday was quite fruitful. The whole squad worked in unison and we were able to discuss some key areas as far as preparation for the games are concerned."

Boys in Orange

Boys in Orange

The Boys in Orange, coming to the tournament also with the tag of the defending champions, are expected to play out their campaign opener in front of packed stands. Cardozo added that this serves as extra motivation for the team. "We aren't under any pressure. Our objectives are clear - be the best versions of ourselves and try to get the trophy back home. Playing in front of the fans would inspire us more and help us remember what we're here for, and we look forward to having a great match against Mohammedan SC," he commented.

"We intend to take the three points home as that'll give us an added boost. Starting on a strong note is important, as it'll set the tone for the rest of our campaign."

Good start

Good start

Lesly Rebello, the team captain shared the coach's views, "We would love to defend our title. Keeping that objective in mind, we've been giving it our all in training and hence we hope to have a good set of games."

"Another thing that I look forward to is playing in front of the fans. As a footballer, you dream of such situations. We intend to make the most out of the opportunity and convert their presence to a motivating factor that'll help us go the extra mile for a win and three points," the 22-year-old added.

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Story first published: Monday, August 15, 2022, 22:15 [IST]
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