Uphill task for Sporting against Dempo tomorrow

Margao, Jan 12 (UNI) Flying high on unbeaten record, table toppers Dempo Sports Club would be looking for full points when they lock horns against Sporting Club De Goa in their 11th round ONGC I-League Championship match to be played here at Nehru Stadium, Fatorda tomorrow.

A well knit Dempo, had put a discipline display in the first leg and is the only unbeaten team in the championship so far, currently topping the table with 24 points, five points ahead of JCT, placed second with 19 points from ten outings each. They would certainly be going all out to maintain their unbeaten race intact.

Dempo coach Arman Colaco's said he is overall quite happy with the team's performance but, his main concern is that playmaker Brazilian Roberto Mendes Silva (Beto), who is down with malaria and Goalkeeper Satish Kumar, who injured his index finger in the last match against Churchill Brothers, will not play tomorrow.

Ristin Rodrigues will replace Beto, while Goalkeepr Abhijit Mondal will replace Satish Kunmar, the coach added.

Dempo's defence has been doing well and midfield is also moving well and there is a lot of upfront mobility. Nigerian Duo, Renty Martin with six goals and Edeh Chidi with five goals to their credit, are combing well in front. Nicolas Borgues, Anthony Pereira, Clifton Gonsalves, Valerian Rebello also figure in the goal scoring list.

On the other hand, Sporting Club De Goa, looking impressive with three consecutive wins against Air India, Kolkata's strong East Bengal and Mohan Bagan by an identical margin 1-0 respectively, though had a bad start in the first leg are placed sixth in the league table with 12 points.

Sporting Club De Goa should also be wary of the fact that Dempo have 23 goals to their credit and only five against. This also speaks about their strong defence line and potent strike force. Sporting Club De Goa would have to make a special vigilance arrangement for Dempo's Nigerian Duo, Renty and Edeh, both of whom can spell doom for them.

Sporting Club De Goa Technical Director Peter Valles said, ''Dempo is a strong team and presently topping the table. I am happy that their team is shaping up well and there is a scope to do better than what we have done especially in the first leg. Our boys know that every match in the second leg is crucial.'' He said in the first leg, his boys played well against Dempo but lost by 1-0. If there is a bit of luck on our side and boys put up the same performance, they displayed in the last three matches, it will be a close contest tomorrow.


Story first published: Saturday, January 12, 2008, 15:34 [IST]
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