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127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL - GOA 2014

16.09.2014: The 127th edition of the Durand Cup is to be conducted in Goa from October 20 to November 9.

 DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA Big clubs like defending champion Mohammedan SC (Last year Winner beat ONGC), United SC, Sporting Goa, Salgaocar, Dempo SC, Churchill Brothers, Indian Navy, Bengaluru FC, Pune FC are likely to play this year Durand Cup. IFA CFL Champion East Bengal may not participate in the Tournament as their aim is for Fed Cup and I-League said Coach Armando Colaso today after ending of CFL match against Tolly. Agragami.

Though most of their Indian players will be not be available at that time for Indian Super League but this tournament will be a good platform to check their reserve bench strength.

1st phase of the tournament (pre quarter final stage) will go on from 20th - 26th October and 2nd phase will start from 29th Oct. This is the first time since 1940 the tournament is being held outside Delhi and in Goa this year to facilitate the people of the state, who have a known passion for football. Goa is the most successful state in recent years in football.

Preliminary rounds will be played on 3 military training regiment, Rain in Madgaon and from quarter final stage onwards matches will be played on Tilak Stadium in Vasco, Raia in Madgaon and Nehru Stadium in Fatodra.

Calcutta Football League Champion East Bengal as well as another Kolkata giant Mohun Bagan will not play in this edition of Durand Cup. Another Kolkata team United SC will not featured in CFL Premier after disqualified from I-League for AFC license criteria, will feature durand Cup. United SC's junior team Pathachakra won this year CFL 1st division league and promoted to premier division. As per different sources this same players of Pathachakra will likely join United SC in loan and will feature this tournament.

Defending Champion Mohammedan SC is very keen to defend the title once again. They starts this season brilliantly with two big win against Kolkata Giant East Bengal as welll as Mohun Bagan but still failed to win CFL title for some disapointing performance in the end.

Tournament have the prize money of 50 lakhs for the winner. The winner will get a cash prize of Rs 25 lakh and Rajendra Prasad Trophy, while the runner-up will become richer by Rs 10 lakh. The losing semi-finalists will get Rs 5 lakh each. The tournament was started in 1888 in Shimla and shifted to Delhi in 1940

ABOUT DURAND CUP

 DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA
  • The Durand Cup is the Asia's oldest and third oldest football tournament in the world. It was first played in 1888. The inaugural Final of the Tournament, in 1888, was a Scottish derby, with the first name on the trophy being the Royal Scots Fusiliers, who beat the Highland Light Infantry with a score of 2-1

  • The Tournament is named after its founder, Sir Mortimer Durand, British India's Foreign Member of the time, the counterpart of the Foreign Secretary in London.

  • In 1940 the venue was transferred to New Delhi, and it is now held at the Ambedkar Stadium in the city. Following India's independence in 1947, the tournament was hosted by the Indian Army. On that year Kolkata's Mohammedan Sporting first won the title beat Royal Warwickshire Regiment 2-1.

  • The first Durand Cup after independence was won by Hyderabad City Police in 1950. They defeated Mohun Bagan AC 1-0.

  • The 125th edition of the Durand Cup was won by Air India in 2012. They defeated by Dodsal Mumbai 3-2.

  • The 126th edition of the Durand Cup was won by Mohammedan Sporting. They defeated ONGC 2-1 to win the cup after 70 years.

  • The Durand Cup was not played during World War-I (1914-1918), World War-II (1939 – 1945) Partition of India (1946 – 49) and Indo-China War (1962).

  • The most successful teams are currently East Bengal and Mohun Bagan, with 16 wins each, accounting for no less 32 cup victories over the years.

  • 127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL GOA - 2014

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA A military procession cum carnival was organised in Miramar Circle, Dauna Paula Circle and near Goa Medical Collage announcing the Durand Cup schedule in Goa in the month of October and November this year.

    The list of teams as also the tournament and event schedule of the much awaited 127th Edition of the prestigious Durand Cup Football Tournament were announced in Goa last week. A total of 12 teams will be participating in the Final stage of the tournament that is to be conducted on a league cum knock out basis. The teams will be divided into four pools and the top teams from each pool will qualify for the semi final stage.

    The teams include, from the I League, Dempo, Sporting Goa, Salgaocar, Churchill Brothers, Bengaluru FC, Pune FC, Mohammaden Sporting and United Sports Club, Indian Navy and Air India. The other 2 teams would include from qualify from the qualification stage
    FROM QR FINAL STAGE
    Mohammedan SC - Kolkata
    United SC - Kolkata
    Churchill Brothers - Goa
    Salgaocar- Goa
    Sporting Goa- Goa
    Bengaluru FC - Bengaluru
    Pune FC - Pune
    Air India - Mumbai
    Indian Navy

    FROM Qualification STAGE

    AIFF Academy
    Army Green
    Army Red
    BEG Centre
    Corps of Signals
    Dalbir FA
    Garh Rif
    Goa Velha
    Indian Air Force
    Laxmi Prasad SC
    Oil India
    SESA FA
    Southern Samity
    Santa Cruz SC
    Vasco SC
    Youngsters Club

    The qualification stage of the tournament is scheduled to commence from 20 October and would terminate on the 27 October 2014. The qualification stage will be played out amongst 16 teams.

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL GOA - 2014

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    PAST WINNERS LIST
    
    
    TOTAL 	Team 			Wins  	Last win
    25 	Mohun Bagan AC 		16    	2000
    26 	East Bengal Club 	16    	2003
    9 	Border Security Force 	7     	1988
    11 	JCT Mills 		5	1996
    7 	Black Watch 		5	1920
    6 	Highland Light Infantry	5	1895
    7 	Hyderabad City Police 	4	1954
    6 	Lancashire Fusiliers 	4	1922
    6 	Mahindra United 	3	2008
    4 	York & Lancaster 	3	1930
    4 	Border Regiment 	2	1937
    4 	Churchill Brothers SC 	3	2011
    3 	Cameronians 		2	1907
    3 	Gorkha Brigade 		2	1969
    3 	Royal Scots Fusiliers 	2	1912
    3 	Sherwood Foresters 	2	1928
    2 	King's Shropshire 	2	1933
    2 	Madras Regimental 	2	1958
    2 	Salgaocar Sports Club 	2	2004
    2 	Scottish Borderers 	2	1892
    2 	South Wales Borderers 	2	1901
    4 	Mohammedan SC 		2	2013 ------>>> Defending champions
    1 	FC Kochin 		1	1997
    1 	Prayag United S.C. 	1	2010
    1 	Air India 		1	2012 
    


    POOLS FOR PRELIMINARY QUALIFYER ROUND (20 - 27 OCTOBER 2014)

    POOL - APOOL - BPOOL - CPOOL - D
    ARMY GREENCORPS OF SIGNALS ARMY RED GARH RIF
    TUFF LAXMI PRASAD SPORTS CLUB GOA VELHA SPORTS CLUB SESA FOOTBALL ACADEMY SANTA CRUZ CLUB OF CAVELOSSIM
    AIR FORCE YCC CHANDIGARH OIL INDIA LTD SOUTHERN SAMITY
    DALBIR FOOTBALL ACADEMY AIFF BEG CENTRE (RURKEE) VASCO SPORTS CLUB


     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    DURAND CUP - PRELIMINARY ROUND - QUALIFICATIOB FIXTURES

    20.10.2014: Youngstar Club 0-5 AIFF U-19 --- Match 1
    AIFF : Robin singh 39', Rakesh 67', Prasant 68', Milan Basumatary 70', 89'

    20.10.2014: Corps of Signal 1-2 Goa Velha SC --- Match 2
    SIG : Lalrata Fela 35'
    GOA : Josua Vaz 52', Suraj Haokankar 73'

    21.10.2014: Garhwal Rifles P-A (3-0) Southern Samity --- Match 3(Garhwal Got Walkover)

    21.10.2014: Vasco SC 0-0,4-3 (pen) Santa Cruz of Cavolissm --- Match 4
    VAS : Aniston Fernandes, Don Bosco Fernandes, Aiken Dias and Naveen Mendes
    SAN : Allwyn Fernandes, Joseph Dias and Mario Mascarenhas

    22.10.2014: Army Green 2-1 Dalbir FA --- Match 5
    ARM : DHANJI SINGH 30', AMARWANT SINGH 50'
    DFA : VIKASH 53'

    22.10.2014: BEG Centre 1-7 Army Red --- Match 6
    ARM : Shadip Rai 32', Dipen Thapa 60',90', Arjun Tudu 71', 82', 88', 90+2'
    BEG : Vijay Pal Singh 77'

    23.10.2014: Sesa FA P-A ( 3-0 ) Oil India --- Match 7 (Sesa Got Walkover)

    23.10.2014: Indian Air Force 1-2 Lakshmi Prashad --- Match 8
    LAK : N.D.opara 21', 65'
    AIF : Vivek 50'

    24.10.2014: AIFF U19 3-0 GOA Velha--- MATCH 9
    AIFF : Daniel Lalrampuia - 52', 57, 60'

    24.10.2014: Gahrawa Riflels 1-3 Vasco SC --- MATCH 10
    VAS : Aniston fernandez 9', 85', Jerose Oliviera 15'
    GAH : Deepak Negi 17'

    25.10.2014: Army Green 0-4 Lakshmi Prashad --- MATCH 11
    LAK : Seriton Fernandes 30', N.D Opara- 54',58', Piexoto 85'

    25.10.2014: Sesa FA 1-1, 4-2 (pen) Army Red --- MATCH 12
    SES : Alber Gonsalves 16'
    ARM : Santu Subba 43'

    26.10.2014: AIFF u19 0-2 Vasco SC -- MATCH 13
    VAS : Jerose Oliveira 3', A. D'Souza 90'

    26.10.2014: Lakshmi Prashad 1-0 Sesa FA --- MATCH 14
    LAK : Seriton Fernandes 25'

    27.10.2014: Aiff u19 1-1, 4-5 (PEN) SESA FA -- MATCH 16
    AIFF : D. Lalrampuia Goal 87'
    SES : J. Vaz Goal 30'

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL GOA - 2014

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA
    Quarter Finals-29 Oct to 04 Nov 2014, Semi Finals-06 Nov 2014, Final - 08 Nov 2014
    Quarter-Finals- 12 teams.
    
    Group A
    
    Team 		M 	W 	D 	L	GF	GA	GD	Pts
    Salgaocar SC	2 	1	1 	0 	5 	2 	+3 	4
    Indian Navy 	2 	1 	0 	1 	4 	5 	-1 	3
    Lakshmi Prashad	2 	0 	1 	1 	3 	4 	-1 	1
    
    30.10.2014: Indian Navy  1-4  Salgaocar SC ( SEMI FINAL)
    SAL: DOUHOU - 16', 47', GILBERT -90+2', A. OLIVIERA - 18'
     INV : RAMAN LAL- 78'
    
    01.11.2014: Lakshmi Prashad  2-3  Indian Navy
     LAK : N.D. Opara 43', 50' 
     NAV : Britto PM 45', V Lalchhuanmawia 46', Riyadh
    
    03.11.2014: Salaocar SC   1-1  Lakshmi Prashad
     SAL : Douhou Pirre 44' 
     LAK : N.D Opara 28'
    
    =========================================================================	
    Group B
    
    Team 	        M	W	D	L	GF	GA	GD	Pts
    Sporting Goa 	2 	2 	0 	0 	7 	3 	+4 	6
    United SC 	2 	1	0 	1 	4 	4 	0 	3	
    Air India 	2 	0 	0 	2 	2 	6 	-4 	0
    
    29.10.2014:  United SC	  2-3  Sporting Goa ( SEMI FINAL)
     SCG : Boima Carpeh 2', 6', Anthoney Wolfe 63' (Pen) 
     USC : Sankar Oraw 28', Sujay Oraw 70' 
    
    31.10.2014:  Air India    1-2  United SC
     USC : Babun Das (pen-12'), Sujay Oraw 44'
     AIR: Siddharth Nayak 3'
    
    
    02.11.2014: Sporting Goa  4-1  Air India 
     scg  : bOIMA Karpeh 15' (pen.), C. Fernandes 28', Clemente 45+1', Anthony Wolfe 64'
     AIR : Neil Gaikwad 68'	
    
    =========================================================================
    Group C
    
    Team            M	W	D	L	GF	GA	GD	Pts
    Bengaluru FC 	2 	1 	1 	0 	4 	3 	+1 	4
    SESA FA 	2 	1 	1 	0 	3 	2 	+1 	4
    Mohammedan SC	2 	0 	0 	2 	1 	3 	-2 	0
    
    30.10.2014: Mohammedan SC     1-2  Bengaluru FC ( SEMI FINAL)
     BEN  : SUNIL CHHETRI 6', LYNGDOH 38' 
     MSC  : ALFRED 68'
    
    01.11.2014: Mohammedan SC     0-1  SESA FA
     SES : Jaison Vaz 48'
    
    03.11.2014: Bengaluru  FC     2-2  SESA FA
     SES : Angelo Colaso 89'',Melwyn 
      BEN  : Sunil 66',90+4
    
    =========================================================================
    	
    Group D
    
    Team 	        M	W	D	L	GF	GA	GD	Pts
    Pune FC	        2 	2 	0 	0 	4 	0 	+4 	6
    Vasco SC        2 	0 	0 	2	1 	2 	-1 	1
    Churchill Bros 	2 	0 	1 	1 	1 	4 	-3 	1
    
    31.10.2014: Pune FC 		  VS  Churchill Brothers
     PUNE : Dhanpal Ganesh 7', Izumi Arata 51', Haokip 65'
    
    02.11.2014: Churchill Brothers 	  1-1  Vasco SC
     CB : Pankaj Sona 66' 
     VAS  : Emmanuel 54' (pen.)
    
    04.11.2014: Vasco SC 0-1  Pune FC ( SEMI FINAL)
     PUN : Bineesh Balan 30'
    
    '=========================================================================
    
    

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL GOA - 2014

    Determined USC crash-lands Air India in Durand Cup



     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA 31.10.2014: Air India 1-2 United SC
    USC : Babun Das (pen-12'), Sujay Oraw 44'
    AIR : Siddharth Nayak 3'
    USC : Ranajit Majumder, Sujoy Oraw, Kingslay, Barun Oraw, Provhat Lakra, Dinesh Bhagat, Soumik Chakrabarty, Babun Das, Jaganath Oraw, Surojit Bose, Sankar Oraw.

    United Sports Club keeps semis hopes alive after 2-1 win against Air India in a crucial 2nd round match of the Durand Cup at the Raia Sports Complex, Goa USC juniors drew their first blood in the national senior football scenario when they out beat Air India 2-1 in their second encounter of Durand Cup 2014. Air India jumped out to an aggressive start and scored the opening goal in the 3rd minute of the match through Siddharth Nayak. but from thereon United SC continued to assert its dominance.

    Sankar Oraon, Surajit Bose, Sujay and Jagannath kept the Air India defenders on their toes and deservedly equalized through Babun Das in just 12 minutes of the game from a spot kick. Thereon, it was a rather slow paced match due to intense heat and both teams preferred not to take any chance. For AI it was the primordial methodology of long ball football while USC preferred to play small passes and build-ups thus keeping possession.

    Unlike a young inexperienced side still to learn the ways of the world, United SC were quick to take the game in their control. Sujay Oraon punishing them with a smart finish after 44th minutes with a swerving free kick beating the AI custodian and finding the back of the net to fetch his team the first straight win. Sujay scored in back to back matches and presently leading the top scorers' List.

    Being elated with the lead, the young purple brigade started pressing on their opponent and created few scoring opportunities but failed to score. Jagannath Oraon missed a golden chance in the 65th minutes when he failed to find the target in a one-two-one situation with only the AI goalkeeper to beat. USC was denied yet another spot kick in the 76th minute when Sujay’s 25 yard curler touched the hand of an AI defender inside the box but was ignored by the referee.

    The experienced USC coach Anjan Nath by then has dropped shutters in the defense and both their central defenders Eze Kingsley and Barun Oraon stood up to the occasion and displayed outstanding defending. All my boys are very talented and with some more experience these boys have a bright future. We will wait for the result of the last match of the group and if we do not move ahead from here, we go back, re-group and prepare ourselves for the next tournament”….. said the USC coach Anjan Nath. He also added “Most of our players are products of our Youth Development Program who are with us since last 7/8 years and it seems we are now getting the benefits.

    =======================================================

    Inexperience cost for United SC as go down the five goal thriller against Sporting Clube de Goa.
    29.10.2014: United SC 2-3 Sporting Goa
    SCG : Boima Carpeh 2', 6', Anthoney Wolef 63' (Pen)
    USC : Sankar Oraw 28', Sujay Oraw 70'

    29.10.2014: A brilliant match which had 16 year's purple boy Sujay Oraon scoring a world class goal from long ranger and Boima scoring braces ended in a narrow (2-3) Sporting Clube de Goa win.

    United Sporting Club and Sporting Clube de Goa played out a five goal thriller, with the Kolkata side going down 2-3 against Sporting Clube de Goa in a pulsating encounter where United SC had come back from two goal down at the Raia Sports Complex, Goa today in the opening encounter of 127th edition of Durand Cup.

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    United SC found themselves trailing inside within five minute when Boima opened the scoring for the Goan side and doubled in the 18th minute of the game before Sankar Oraon scoring for United SC in the 41st minute. Anthony scoring the third goal for the Goan side from penalty in the 65th minute of the game, when Sujay fouled Boima as he escaped the offside trap.

    United SC pressed on for the equaliser with two successive chances in the second half. Finally Sujay Oraon, the 16 year old purple boy scoring a world class goal from long ranger. There have been several golden opportunities in the match which if capitalized could have created history for these young boys. However, the easiest among them all was on the 73rd minute when Nigerian Francis Okechukwu missed an absolute sitter with the SGC goalkeeper at his mercy.

    The team comprised mainly of young aspiring localities that grew up with time through our Youth Development Program displayed a spirited performance with footballing valor which has been adored by all who were present in the Stadium. Eminent Coaches like Derreck Periera, Karim Bencherifa and SCG Coach Oscar Brozon came up and congratulated the boys for their exceptional recital.

    Also to our experience it was probably the first time that all Goan football fans present in the Stadium cheered a Kolkata team against their Goan opponent due to their outstanding performance. When asked, USC Coach Anjan Nath sounded quite satisfied with the performance of his young brigade, especially with the performance of two central defenders Eze Kingsley and Barun Oraon and the mid-fielders Dinesh Bhagat and Jagannath Oraon. To his opinion "It was inexperience and lack of body weight that made the difference between the two teams at the end". However, he assured that the team will re-group and display even better football in the next match.

    Team Squad: Ranajit, Sujoy, Kingslay, Barun, Lakra, Laxmi Mandi, Dinesh, Babun, Jaganath, Surojit (C), Sankar

    ==================================================================

    United SC team reached GOA as take on Sporting Clube de Goa tomorrow

    28.10.2014: The Purple Brigade reached Goa on Monday for the 127th Durand Cup in the city. United SC will first play against Sporting Clube de Goa on 29th October, Wednesday in their Pool-B first round match . United Sports Club will be eyeing nothing less than a victory when they take on Sporting Clube de Goa in the opening encounter of the tournament.

    Both the matches of United SC in the group- B would be played at the Raia Sports Complex, Goa. "I'm happy and satisfied with our practice sessions in Kolkata. We have maximum young talent reared up through our youth development program & I am sure they will keep a mark of themselves in the future football map of India” United SC coach Anjan Nath said.

    "Both our matches would be tough. You can never take them lightly, for now, we have to focus on one match at a time," he added after their practice session at the Raia Sports Complex, Goa this evening. With couple of foreigners - defender EZE Kingsley, and striker Onyeama Francis Okechukwu in the squad, United SC will hope to get off to a winning start.

    United SC, coached by Anjan Nath and assistant coach Partha Sen, have recently signed on loan the likes of Laxmi Mandi, Azaruddin Mullick & the senior player like Sankar Oraon.

    ' While the opponent of United SC, Goan side Sporting Goa's new Marquee player Trinidad and Tobago based Anthony Wolfe is set to make his debut for the club and Spanish head coach Oscar Bruzon is expected the home crowd support for his team. Local Boys like Beevan D'Mello,Velito Cruz, Rowllin Borges, Mauvin Borges and Cajetan may be included in the team and for the reason the team will get locla support. Under the coaching of Oscar Bunoz, Sporting Goa won agaonst United in I-League match on 2012

    United SC full team squad is as follows:

    Ranajit Majumder, Biten Oraon, Barun Oraon, EZE Kingsley, Manotosh Chakladar, Sujay Oraon, Santu Singh, Provat Lakra, Dinesh Bhagat , Babun Das, Sumit Oraon, Jagannath Oraon, Laxmi Mandi, Azaruddin Mullick, Sankar Oraon, Rajon Burman, Soumik Chakraborty, Ranjan Mistry, Surajit Bose, Onyeama Francis Okechukwu.

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL - 2014

    Pune FC aim for first-ever final, face Sporting Goa

    05.11.2014: PFC PRESS RELEASE : Pune FC will be up against an in-form Sporting Clube de Goa side as they battle out for a place in the showpiece final of the 127th Durand Cup at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa on Thursday. Both teams come into the big semifinal clash on the back of consecutive wins and will battle hard to qualify for the big final.

    Interestingly, the game is Pune FC's third against a Goan opponent in the competition this year. Moreover, this is not only the first time that Pune FC face Sporting in the Durand Cup, but also the first time ever that both sides face off in a competition outside the I-League.

    Having qualified for the semifinals after three years with their best ever group stage performance, Pune FC will hope to go one better this time and make it into the final two. "We have a few minor injuries and yellow cards to deal with. But we believe in our abilities, and I think we have enough in our team to go all the way", said Coach Karim Bencherifa after a light training session ahead of the match against Sporting.

    Sporting, who had a long rest after the last game, come into the semis on the back of two solid performances and will be banking on heavily on ex-Pune FC striker Boima Karpeh (3 goals) and his partner in attack Anthony Wolfe (2 goals). The duo has contributed five out of Sporting’s seven goals in two group games and will provide a challenge for the Pune FC defense led by Luciano Sabrosa and Salam Ranjan Singh.

    However, Pune FC will be confident going into the game being the only side to not concede a goal in the group stage with two clean sheets, and would like to maintain the record. On the team news front, keeper Amrinder Singh returns from suspension, but left-back Raju Yumnam will miss out having received two yellow cards in the group-stage.

    Furthermore, the game will be the first time defender and ex-Sporting captain Matthew Gonsalves faces his old side since joining Pune FC earlier this season. The match kicks off at 3.00 PM IST on Thursday.

    ==================================================

    Debutants Bineesh, Ansari shine as Pune FC seal semi berth

    04.11.2014: Vasco SC 0-1 Pune FC ( REACH SEMI FINAL) PUN : Bineesh Balan 30'

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    04.11.2014: PFC PRESS RELEASE : Pune FC sealed their second semifinal berth in the Durand Cup with a 1-0 win over Vasco SC in their final Group-IV encounter at the Raia Sports Complex in Goa on Tuesday.

    Pune FC's win was powered by two debutants – attacker Bineesh Balan and keeper Monirizzaman Ansari. While Bineesh's lone strike in the 30th minute turned out to be the winner, Ansari's brilliant penalty save in the 52nd minute also helped Pune FC to a second consecutive win. The win also took Pune FC’s tally to six points in Group-IV ahead of Vasco SC (2nd, 1pt) and Churchill Bros (3rd, pt). It not only turned out to be their best ever group stage performance, but also helped helped them qualify for a second semifinal after 2011.

    Coach Karim Bencherifa made two changes to the squad handing debuts to Bineesh and Ansari who replaced the suspended Amrinder Singh and Anthony D'Souza while keeping the rest of the squad same. After an equally contested opening quarter, Pune FC went close in the 18th minute. Bineesh's powerful attempt from the edge of the box was punched away by the Vasco keeper to keep score unchanged. Off the resultant corner, Luciano Sabrosa's header went just wide.

    Pune FC continued their domination and went close once again. Medio Dhanpal Ganesh's long range strike was palmed away by the keeper for a corner kick. The set-piece that followed, gave Pune FC a well-deserved lead. Playmaker Ryuji Sueoka floated in a deep corner from the left flank which was headed into the box from the far post. The ball fell for Bineesh on the edge of the box and he drilled in a powerful shot beating the keeper with ease as Pune FC took a 1-0 lead.

    Pune FC kept on pushing ahead but Vasco defended deep. At the other end, the home side went close on a couple of occasions but the Pune FC defense led by Sabrosa and Salam Ranjan Singh held firm keeping Pune FC's lead intact going into the breather. The second half was a similar affair with both teams attacking from the word go. However, it was Vasco who almost equalised in the 49th minute.

    Vasco earned a freekick outside the box on the right and the ball which was fired in caused a melee inside the box. With Ansari beaten, a cheekily dinked towards the Pune FC goal by an opponent was cleared off the line by Matthew Gonsalves. Two minutes later, Pune FC defense was once again caught napping. While trying to clear a long ball into the box, defender Raju Yumnam brought down Rohan Kamble inside the box and the referee pointed to the spot giving Vasco a golden chance to equalise.

    However, striker Emmanuel Ejiogu effort was brilliantly saved by keeper Ansari to keep Pune FC in charge. Pune FC started growing in confidence and began pushing up with more frequency. Winger Prakash Thorat and medio Mumtaz Akhtar had their attempts from close blocked by the defense. Into the final quarter, the game slowed down. However, substitute Eric Brown, on for Sueoka, had a couple of attempt on goal but was denied by the 'keeper. Thereafter, Pune FC kept their calm to close out on a second consecutive win.

    Pune FC now play local side Sporting Clube de Goa in the second semifinal on November 6th at 3.00 PM IST.

    =============================================

    Pune FC face Vasco SC for a semifinal berth

    03.11.2014: PFC PRESS RELEASE : Pune FC face Goan- side Vasco SC hoping to seal a second semifinal berth in four years with a win in the final Group-IV quarterfinal league Durand Cup encounter at the Raia Sports Complex in Goa on Tuesday. Having logged their biggest-ever win in the competition with a 3-0 victory over Churchill Brothers in the previous match, Pune FC will be confident going into the game against Vasco and would like to maintain the winning momentum.

    Furthermore, a win will not only help Pune FC log the best ever group-stage performance (beating the previous best of 4 points in 2010 & 2011), but also will send Pune FC into the semifinal only for the second time ever in the competition after 2011. Pune FC go into the game leading Group-IV with 3 points, ahead of Vasco (2nd, 1 pt) and Churchill Bros (3rd, 1 pt) after the game between the two Goan sides ended in a 1-1 draw on Sunday.

    The result means that Pune FC needs just a draw to seal its place in last-4. However, with both sides still in contention for the semifinals, there’s no space for any complacency. "I have made it clear to the team that we cannot play for a draw, we have to play our normal game and win the match. It will help us build our confidence for the next round," said Coach Karim Bencherifa after a training session at the Benaulim Football Ground.

    Going into the game, Pune FC will be missing two players from action - keeper Amrinder Singh who serves a one game suspension and striker Thongkhosiem Haokip who suffered a minor injury in the previous game. In first choice custodian Amrinder's absence, Coach Bencherifa will have to choose between Arup Debnath and Moniruzzaman Ansari on the matchday.

    On the other hand, Vasco SC comes into the game after a 1-1 draw in their first game with a chance to qualify for the last-4. Like Churchill Bros, the young Vasco team also carry forward the experience of a long Goa Pro League campaign and will provide a challenge for Pune FC. Interestingly, while both sides have met before in a couple of tournaments, it will be the first time they face off in the Durand Cup. The game kicks off at 3.45 PM IST on Tuesday.

    =====================================================

    Pune FC open Durand Cup campaign in style; down Churchill Bros 3-0

    31.10.2014 : PUNE FC ( 3-0 ) CHURCHILL BROTHERS :: ( FT.)
    PUNE : Dhanpal Ganesh 7', Izumi Arata 51', Haokip 65'
    CHR : Sukhwinder, Elvis, Sanjay, Ariwachukwa, Rovan, Pankaj, Micky, Manjit, Asley, Odafa, Richard.
    PUN : Amrinder, Luciano, Matthew, Raju, Arata, Sueoka, Ganesh, Prakash, Anthony, Ranjan, Shoaib.

    FT : FULL TIME. Pune FC win 3-0 in Durand Cup.
    90+6': PUNE GK Amrinder booked for 2nd time and shown Red card.
    65': GOALLLLLLLLLLLL : 3-0 to Pune FC. Haokip scored the 3rd from a solo run from right wing.
    51': GOALLLLLLLLLLL : 2-0 to Pune FC. Arata scored from one to one situation.
    7': GOALLLLLLLLLL 1-0 to Pune City. Dhanpal Ganesh scored from a free kick of Seuoka.


     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA HAOKIP SCORED

    PFC PRESS RELEASE : Pune FC began their Durand Cup campaign in style with a comfortable 3-0 win over Churchill Brothers SC in the quarterfinal stage Group-IV encounter at the Raia Sports Complex in Raia, Goa on Friday. Goals from midfielder Dhanpal Ganesh (7th minute), skipper Arata Izumi (51st) and substitute striker Thongkhosiem Haokip (65th) handed Coach Karim Bencherifa a convincing win in his first competitive game in-charge. The win takes Pune FC to the top of Group-IV with three points.

    Interestingly, the win was Pune FC's biggest ever in the competition eclipsing the previous 2-0 win over Indian Air Force in 2010. Moreover, it was Pune FC's first win after five matches in the Durand Cup since 2011.The game was marred with controversy towards the end, as custodian Amrinder Singh was sent off deep into injury time forcing Pune FC to play with ten men for the final few minutes.

    For the early morning kick off, Coach Bencherifa handed starts to new signings Matthew Gonsalves, Luciano Sabrosa, Raju Yumnam, Ryuji Sueoka and Shoaib Syed. The game began frantically with both sides pushing up from the word go. However, despite Churchill having more possession, it was Pune FC who stayed calm and opened scoring inside the first ten minutes.

    Having earned a freekick just outside the box on the right flank, Sueoka sent in a low ball which the Churchill defense failed to clear. In the melee that followed, Ganesh was successful in pushing the ball into the net from 3-yards out. The goal gave Pune FC confidence as they started to attack more. At the same time, Churchill, banking heavily on striker Odafa Okolie, kept on giving him the ball but the big Nigerian was marked out by defenders Matthew and Salam Ranjan Singh.

    Midway through the half, winger Prakash Thorat came agonisingly close to getting his first goal for Pune FC. A quick backheel on the left flank from Anthony D’Souza released Raju whose accurate cross at the far post fell for Prakash whose acrobatic attempt was palmed away by the ‘keeper. A minute past the half hour mark, keeper Amrinder received his first booking after the referee penalised him for time-wasting. At the other end, Pune FC kept on pushing and had Sueoka and Prakash go close.

    Into first half added time, Odafa created a good chance for the home side. His dribbled past three defenders outside the box and set up Micky whose piledriver went straight into Amrinder as the half came to a close with Pune FC leading 1-0. The second half was a similar story as Pune FC continued to dominate proceedings. Four minutes in, Sueoka beat the offside trap, but his diving header off Matthew’s cross in from the right went wide.

    Pune FC's persistence paid off as two minutes later skipper Arata doubled the lead. A perfect short pass from Anthony to Arata down the middle saw India-international dribble past a defender on the edge of the box and chip the ball over an on rushing keeper into the net. As the game turned physical, Pune FC had another golden chance to increase the lead. Two minutes past the hour mark, Sueoka capitalised on a loose ball and set up Anthony down the left. The Goan winger timed the run well but his attempt from inside the box was saved by the Churchill custodian.

    Three minutes later, Pune FC got their third goal. Substitute Haokip, on for Shoaib Syed, dispossessed an opponent down the middle and set on a solo from the halfline. As he approached the goal, the youngster sent a low drive from inside the box beating the keeper to get his name on the scoresheet. Minutes later, keeper Amrinder kept Churchill at bay as he rushed out to block Odafa’s shot in a one-on-one situation. Moments later, Odafa once again got into the clear. The striker beat Amrinder who came out of the box to clear the danger, but his shot was blocked by a timely slide from Raju on the edge of the box.

    Into the final ten minutes, Pune FC went close again. This time, Haokip set on a solo from the left and found Prakash on the right whose left-footed attempt from the edge of the box sailed over the horizontal. In the final minute of normal time, Pune FC had a glorious opportunity to get the fourth. However, substitute Eric Brown, on for Sueoka, who was sent through on goal by Haokip, had his attempt from close saved by the keeper. At the other end, Amrinder kept his composure in another one-on-one situation with Odafa to keep the score unchanged.

    Despite having a great game in the goal, a combination of misjudgement and miscommunication saw Amrinder receive a second yellow card deep into injury time for time-wasting which left Pune FC down to ten men. Having made all three substitutions, skipper Arata had to put on the gloves for the final few minutes as Pune FC collected all three points. Pune FC now play Vasco SC in their second group game on November 4th.

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    30.10.2014: PFC Press Release : Pune FC face Churchill Brothers test in Durand Cup opener

    Pune FC will be eager to kick off their Durand Cup campaign with a win when they face Goan side Churchill Brothers in their quarterfinal stage Group-IV opener at the Raia Sports Complex in Goa on Friday.

    The game which will be Pune FC's first official game of the season will also be Coach Karim Bencherifa's first competitive game since joining in July and the Moroccan is cautious in his approach.

    Pune FC, who face Churchill Brothers for the first time in the Durand Cup, will be confident going into the clash after a long preseason which has seen them travel across the country to Goa, Mumbai and New Delhi. Moreover, Pune FC has already completed a week-long training programme in Goa ahead of the competition in order to get acclimatised to the conditions.

    'The spirit in the camp is fantastic. Everyone is looking forward to start the first competition. It won't be an easy game, but I have confidence in my boys,' said Coach Bencherifa after a light training session in the morning at the Benaulim Football Ground which has been the team’s base.

    Speaking on the eve of the clash, skipper Arata Izumi said, 'The preseason was long but it was planned really well in a systematic way. The aim was to keep our fitness at peak for this tournament. We are prepared mentally and physically for this challenge.'

    With no injuries to worry about, Coach Bencherifa will have a full 20-man squad at disposal on Friday. The new look squad consists of eight new faces in keeper Moniruzzaman Ansari, defenders Luciano Sabrosa, Raju Yumnam, Matthew Gonsalves, midfielders Ryuji Sueoka and Eric Brown, along with attackers Bineesh Balan and Shoaib Syed.

    On the other hand, Churchill Brothers come into the game having recently finished their commitments in the Goa Pro-League and carry the experience of playing competitive matches. The home side will be relying on their talismanic striker and former I-League top scorer Odafa Okolie to lead their frontline.

    While Bencherifa will be up against the side he first coached in India, it will also be the first time Bineesh Balan and Raju Yumnam face their former team having switched sides in the summer.

    ==================================================

    Durand Cup: Medio Arata Izumi to lead 20-man Pune FC squad

    28.10.2014: Long serving midfielder Arata Izumi will lead a 20-member Pune FC squad at the 127th edition of Durand Cup, in Goa. The third oldest football competition in the world, continues to remain Pune FC’s top-priority season opener and this will be the sixth time Pune FC will figure in the tournament.

    Incidentally, the competition was the first National-level meet the team played after coming into existence in 2007. For Arata, this is the first time he will captain Pune FC in a tournament. The India international gets the opportunity after skipper and defender Anas Edathodika misses out due to a hamstring injury.

    Like the previous edition, Pune FC is seeded directly into the quarterfinal group stage and is paired along with Churchill Brothers and a qualifier in Group-IV. Pune FC begins their campaign against Churchill Brothers on Friday, 31st October before facing the qualifier on Tuesday, 4th November at the Raia Sports Complex in Goa.

    Going into the tournament after a long preseason, Pune FC will hope to better their best ever performance of reaching the semifinals in the 2011 edition of the competition. Moreover, having had a dismal run in the 2013 edition, the lads will be eager to put on a good show. The 20-man squad announced by Coach Karim Bencherifa consists of eleven retained players, eight new signings and an academy graduate.

    The Team

    Goalkeepers: Amrinder Singh, Arup Debnath, Moniruzzaman Ansari

    Defenders: Mathew Gonsalves, Zohmingliana Ralte, Luciano Sabrosa, Srikanth Ramu, Salam Ranjan Singh, Raju Yumnam

    Midfielders: Dhanpal Ganesh, Arata Izumi (Capt.), Prakash Thorat, Anthony D’Souza, Eric Brown, Mumtaz Akhtar, Fanai Lalrempuia, Ryuji Sueoka

    Forwards: Bineesh Balan, Shoaib Syed, Thongkhosiem Haokip

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL - 2014

    SALGAOCAR SC REACH IN THE SEMI FINALS OF 127th DURAND CUP

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA SALGAOCAR PRESS RELEASE : 03.11.2014: Salaocar SC 1-1 Lakshmi Prashad
    SAL : Douhou Pirre 44'
    LAK : N.D Opara 28'

    SALGAOCAR PRESS RELEASE : Ivorian, Douhou Pierre netted his third of the competition to help Salgaocar FC hold Tuff Laxmi Prasad SC to a 1-1 draw in the final Group A quarterfinal league match of the 127th edition of the Durand Cup played at Raia Panchayat Ground. Both the goals were scored in the first half. The Greens topped Group A with 4 points and will take on the winners of Group C in the semi-finals.

    Derrick made 4 changes to the side that took the field against Indian Navy. Pawan Kumar started in place of Zambian Francis Kasonde in the heart of defence to enable the gaffer field Scottish striker Darryl Duffy as his second foreigner in the starting 11, thereby making his intentions clear at the outset. Rosario Mendes started in place of Othallo Tabia at right back and Rocus Lamare returned to the side in place of Clifton Dias.

    The game got off to a brisk start with both teams looking to score early. Salgaocar used the flanks to good effect but the Tuff defence manned by former Salgaocar player, Chika Wali, held fort. Much against the run of play, Tuff broke the deadlock when a break from the left resulted in a corner. From the ensuing corner, ND Opara headed home from close range in the 28th minute to give Tuff Laxmi Prasad the lead.

    Salgaocar pressed hard for the equaliser with Douhou Pierre linking up well with Darryl Duffy to create a few half chances and problems aplenty for the rival defence. Tuff seemed all set to go into the breather with their lead intact. However, ‘The Greens’ had other ideas and managed to break down the rival citadel to restore parity when Douhou’s scorcher from the just outside the box found the top corner leaving the keeper with no chance.

    In the second period, Tuff went all out for the winner which allowed Salgaocar to catch their opponents on the break. Tuff though persisted and one of their attacks from the right resulted in the ball landing at the feet of ND Opara. The latter took a crack at goal and almost restored Tuff’s lead. However, Augustin Fernandes did brilliantly to effect an excellent goal line save. The Greens survived some anxious moments towards the end but held on to earn a place in the semi-finals scheduled for 6th November.

    ============================================================

    30.10.2014: Salgaocar SC 4-1 Indian Navy
    SAL: DOUHOU - 16', 47', GILBERT -90+2', A. OLIVIERA - 18'
    INV : RAMAN LAL- 78'

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA SALGAOCAR PRESS RELEASE : Salgaocar FC kicked off their Durand Cup campaign in style as they demolished Indian Navy 4-1 in their opener of the 127th Durand Cup at Raia sports complex on Thursday, 30th October. Midfielder Douhou Peirre (16th, 47th), Aslon Oliveira (18th) and Gilbert Oliveira (90+2) scored for the 'Greens' while Indian Navy pulled one back through Raman Lal in the 70th minute.

    The match got off to a fast pace with Salgaocar dominating possession and threatening to score from the outset. 'The Greens' were relentless in the first quarter and it was only time before they broke the deadlock.

    Ivorian, Douhou Peirre, who was roped in at the start of the season, was the architect of their victory with two goals and an assist. A neat lay off by Bikash Jairu saw him drill the ball to the keeper’s left and in the corner to give Salgaocar a much deserved lead. Two minutes later, Douhou was in the thick of things again as a quick counter saw him in space on the right flank. He smartly squared the ball for Aslon Oliveira who was lurking inside the box to make it 2-0, this time ground beating the keeper to his right with another stiff grounder.

    The half continued in much the same vein and barring a few counter attacks it was all Salgaocar. A nicely worked one-two between Gilbert and Douhou saw the former through on goal with only the keep at his mercy. However the Navy keeper thwarted the danger with a smart save. Moments earlier, Thangjam Saran Singh who was full of running, had rattled the crossbar with a scorcher from 25 yards out.

    After the breather, Salgaocar further extended their lead in the 47th minute through Douhou. Gurjinder beat a couple of defenders on the left and found the Ivorian at the top of the box who beat the keeper with a cleverly placed goal.

    Indian Navy pulled one back in the 70th minute through Raman Lal after Priyo Kumar Sharma and Britto PM had done the spadework. After having his shot saved from point blank range by the Salgaocar custodian, Karanjit Singh, his second attempt found it’s way in despite an acrobatic effort by defender Augustin Fernandes to clear it off the line.

    Salgaocar ended the match on a high as Gilbert Oliveira's cross deep into stoppage time dipped inside the far post giving Naval keeper Visnu VK no chance whatsoever.Salgaocar next take on Tuff Laxmi Prasad SC on the 3rd of November in a morning kick-off.



    ======================================================

    Salgaocar FC high on confidence ahead of Durand Cup opener

    29.10.2014: SALGAOCAR SC PRESS RELEASE : Having started the season strongly with 7 wins and 2 draws in the Goa Professional League, it is not hard to see why Salgaocar FC exude every bit of confidence ahead of their Group A opener in the Durand Cup against Indian Navy scheduled for the 30th of November at the Raia Panchayat Ground. The Durand Cup which gets underway on the 29th of October culminates with the finals on the 8th of November.

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    The third team in the Group is another Goan outfit, Tuff Laxmi Prasad SC, who secured a spot in the final round after having emerged through the qualifiers. "It is always good to have a few wins under your belt at the start of the season. However, the first phase of the Goa Pro League is now a thing of the past and we are focussed solely on the Durand Cup. We need to start afresh” cautioned coach Derrick Pereira. "The team spirit, camaraderie and confidence amongst the players is at an all-time high", he added.

    The 9 rounds of the Goa Pro League played thus far would have given the gaffer a fair opportunity to try out various combinations given the fact that the club has made a few signings at the start of the season.

    Salgaocar FC first annexed the Durand Cup in 1999, beating Kolkata giants East Bengal via a penalty shoot-out and in the process becoming the first Goan side to win the coveted trophy. They went on to repeat the feat in 2003, beating the very same opponents in much the same vein. Coach Derrick Pereira knows only far too well the feeling and more importantly what it takes to win the Durand Cup, having won the tournament twice, once with the all-onquering Salgaocar squad of 1999 under Shabbir Ali, and then guiding Mahindra United to the Durand Cup triumph in 2007-08 as coach.

    Salgaocar FC will next take on Tuff Laxmi Prasad on the 3rd of November whom they beat by a solitary goal in their last encounter in the Goa Pro League last month.

    Coach Derrick Pereira names strong 20-man squad. Squad for Durand Cup

    Goal Keepers : Karanjit Singh, Abhijit Das.

    Defenders : Francis Kasonde, Augustin Fernandes, Gurjinder Kumar, Nicolau Colaco, Pawan Kumar, Brian Mascarenhas, Othallo Tabia.

    Midfielders : Douhou Pierre, Rocus Lamare (c), Gilbert Oliveira, Thangjam Saran Singh, Zakeer Mundampara, Karma Tsewang, Clifton Dias, Rosario Mendes.

    Forwards : Darryl Duffy, Bikash Jairu, Aslon Oliveira.

    127TH DURAND CUP FOOTBALL - 2014

    Bengaluru up against Salgaocar challenge in Durand semis

    05.11.2014: BENGALURU PRESS RELEASE : Ashley Westwood has said there's no pressure on his boys but hopes they give good account of themselves as Bengaluru FC will be up against fellow I-League competitors and favourites Salgaocar in the semifinals of the Durand Cup to be played at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa, on Thursday.

    Bengaluru FC have played Salgaocar twice, coming away 2-1 winners in Goa and Bengaluru last season but the Blues know better than to rest on past laurels. However, protecting their undefeated record in Goa (played 6, won 5, drawn 1) is something that would provide motivation to Bengaluru FC. 'We're looking forward to a good game as it is the semifinal and it's always a big occasion. Fortunately we are the away side so there's not much pressure on us," said Westwood.

    The gaffer played two completely different sets of defenders in as many league games and with the tournament rule of allowing only two foreign players on the pitch, has looked at the tournament as a chance to give his Indian players a look in. "Salgaocar have the advantage of playing many competitive matches with two foreigners over the years in the Goa League. It's a little bit of an unknown territory for us. But one that we are looking forward to as it gives us a chance to keep improving our Indian players which was one of the main reasons the club was formed. Let's just hope we put in a good performance and give a good account of ourselves as champions."

    Salgaocar, chasing their third Durand Cup, have shopped in the foreigner department this summer, adding former Pune FC midfielder Douhou Pierre and Zambian defender Francis Kasonde to the squad. Derrick Pereira has also retained the joint top-scorer from the last season of the I-League, Darryl Duffy, and much of Salgaocar's hopes will be pinned on the Scotsman to fire.

    Both teams took a similar route out of the group stages with a win and a draw each and Bengaluru FC are well aware that the margin for error is very less from here on. "We have taken the positives and worked on the shortcomings from the games in the group stages. The team is motivated and knows that a slip-up cannot be afforded. We have been doing the right things and hopefully it will all come together for us on Thursday," said skipper Sunil Chhetri.

    The game kicks off at 8.45 am. In the second semifinal, which will be played later in the day, Pune FC take on Sporting Clube de Goa.

    ================================================

    Late drama as Bengaluru FC make semifinals

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA 03.11.2014: Bengaluru FC 2-2 SESA FA
    SES : Angelo Colaso 89'', Melwyn
    BEN : Sunil 66',90+4

    03.11.2014: BFC PRESS RELEASE : Sunil Chhetri kept his calm to fire home an injury-time penalty that sent Bengaluru FC through to the semifinals of the Durand Cup after the Blues drew 2-2 with SESA Academy at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa, on Monday.

    Uncharacteristically slow off the blocks and going into the half with the score at 0-0, Chhetri gave Bengaluru FC the lead in the 65th minute after Ponif Vaz handled the ball in the box off an Udanta Singh cross. A little more than 10 minutes from time, SESA found an equaliser when ’keeper Pawan Kumar failed to deal with a firmly struck cross from substitute Agnelo Colaco after charging out to collect it.

    With both teams on equal points and a similar goal difference, a tied finish would send Bengaluru through to the semis given Ashley Westwood's team had more goals scored for than SESA. But just while it seemed the Blues would take the draw route to the last four, SESA rocked the game when another substitute, Melwyn Fernandes, smashed home what the home side thought was a certain winner in the second minute of injury-time. With the ball down the right, Fernandes unleashed a right-footer that swerved past a hapless Kumar to send the home support into celebratory frenzy.

    With a little less than two minutes to the whistle and Bengaluru FC earning a corner, Westwood decided to throw in John Johnson for Curtis Osano. The change worked like a miracle when Johnson, without even touching the ball, turned the game on its head. Moving in the box in a build up to the corner, Johnson was brought down after Fernandes tugged the defender's shirt rather immaturely. The referee had no hesitation in pointing to the spot before sending Fernandes off for a second yellow.

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    Chhetri walked up to take the kick that would decide Bengaluru's progress in the tournament and made no mistake, tucking his shot to the 'keeper's left to set up a semifinal clash with Salgaocar.

    Westwood felt his side should have taken their chances while giving the spirited SESA show credit. "We are thankful to be in the semifinal of the Durand Cup. We created our chances but never put them away and with a young side like SESA who had nothing to lose, it can always come back to haunt you and it almost did. We spoke about how quick SESA are and we should have put away our chances," he said.

    "To concede like that, you've surely got to feel for SESA but we've watched replays of the penalty incident and have no doubt whatsoever that it was a deserved one," he said. Bengaluru take on Derrick Pereira's side on Thursday.

    ==============================================

    Bengaluru FC take on SESA with an eye on semifinal

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    BFC PRESS RELEASE : Bengaluru FC take on SESA Football Academy for a place in the semifinal of the Durand Cup at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa, on Monday. The team from Goa beat Mohammedan Sporting 1-0 on Saturday to make the battle for a place in the last four a two-horse race in Group C.

    Earlier last week, Ashley Westwood’s boys put on a show replete with chances against Mohammedan Sporting and though the Blues ended up 2-1 winners, the gaffer has had plenty of positives to take into Monday’s game.

    'I'm pleased with the way the team is shaping up. The boys look sharp and are training well. This is a prestigious Cup that we are part of and are very keen to leave our stamp on it,' said Westwood on the eve of the game.

    The Bengaluru FC coaching staff were at the SESA-Mohammedan game and Westwood was impressed with what he saw. 'SESA is surely one of the best academies in the country. We watched them play and most of the boys on the team are quick. It should be a good game that we are looking forward to be part of,' said Westwood.

    Talking pace, Udanta Singh and CK Vineeth - on as second half substitutes, gave ample proof of what they are capable of on the wings and it will be interesting to see Westwood’s selection for the game.

    Skipper Sunil Chhetri, who scored the opening goal against Mohammedan, said the team has been working hard and the number of chances created in the Durand opener was an encouraging sign. 'We aren’t dwelling too much on what the score line could have been. Instead, we've taken the positives and are confident that we can create those chances again.'

    ===============================================================

    30.10.2014 : MOHAMMEDAN SC ( 1-2 ) BENGALURU FC (FT..)
    BFC : Pawan, Keegan, John, Vishal, Manju, Eugene, Thoi singh, Josh, Beikhokhei, Sunil chhetri, Robin Singh
    MSC : Arnab, Irfan, Rajib, Lal, Gaur, Sukhdeb, Waseem, Basanta, Alfred, Imran, Somida
    BEN : SUNIL CHHETRI 6', LYNGDOH 38'
    MSC : ALFRED 68'

    Bengaluru FC beat Mohammedan to begin Durand challenge with a win

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    BFC MEDIA RELEASE : Summer signing Eugeneson Lyngdoh scored in style on his Bengaluru FC debut as the I-League champions began their Durand Cup campaign with a 2-1 win over Mohammedan Sporting at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa, on Thursday. Lyngdoh's goal in the 38th minute came after skipper Sunil Chhetri was at his opportunistic best to give the Blues a lead as early as in the sixth minute.

    While the final score suggested a game in which Bengaluru FC managed to edge out Mohammedan, the truth was far from it. Ashley Westwood started with Robin Singh up front with Chhetri and Beikhokhei Beingaichho while Josh Walker led the midfield duties with Thoi Singh and Lyngdoh in tow. The Durand Cup rule of a team being allowed to field a maximum of two foreigners on the pitch meant the central defensive duties were shared by John Johnson and NS Manju.

    Clearly a far more organised side than Mohammedan, Bengaluru got things together in the 6th minute when Chhetri was at hand to pounce on a mistake from defender Lal Daniela who failed to control a simple pass from fellow centre-back Gaur Naskar. Stealing the ball from Daniela, Chhetri sped into the box and fired past an understandably upset Arnab Das Sharma in goal.

    Bengaluru should have had a few more before the half but poor choices and wayward finishing in the box let them down. But if the Blues' first was opportunistic, the second was a perfectly orchestrated counter. Dealing with a Mohammedan corner, Keegan Pereira picked out Beingaichho on the right who exchanged a quick one-two with Chhetri before playing it back to him. The skipper put Thoi Singh through and his cross was met by Lyngdoh whose acrobatic volley was placed to perfection.

    'It was a great feeling to get the chance to start. But to get off the mark in my first game was something I had wished for all the while. It was an extraordinary and an exciting feeling to say the least,' said Lyngdoh.

    Westwood rung in a change at half time, introducing Udanta Singh for Beingaichho and on the hour mark, brought on Sean Rooney and CK Vineeth for Chhetri and Josh Walker. The changes didn’t waste time causing Mohammedan problems and Udanta may well have had a hat-trick on debut. The youngster was a livewire down the right, taking out defenders with his pace and skill but he wished his finishing on the given day would have been better.

    Bengaluru seemed to be cruising till Alfred Jayran pulled one back for Mohammedan in the 68th minute. Receiving the ball on top of the box, Jayran chopped Lyngdoh before picking his corner to score. Robin Singh could have put the game to bed on a couple of occasions and his best chance came in added time where, after being put through by quick Keegan throw in, he did well to turn a defender. But his attempt to pick a spot and place home was awry.

    Bengaluru did survive some anxious moments but had enough to see out the game. Westwood’s team play Goa side SESA FA in their final group fixture on November 3.

    ==================================================

    Bengaluru FC up against Mohammedan in Durand opener

    BFC PRESS RELEASE : Westwood Looks To Get Combinations Right, Asks Team To Enjoy The Season Opener. Bengaluru FC kick off the season with a Durand Cup opener against reigning champions Mohammedan Sporting at the Raia Sports Complex, in Goa, on Thursday. The tournament's 127th edition has Bengaluru in Pool C, clubbed along with the Kolkata club and SESA FA who came through the qualifiers. The team, captained by Sunil Chhetri, arrived in Goa on Tuesday and had a light session on Wednesday

    Earlier this month, the I-League champions toured China as part of their pre-season exercise and though it was a mixed bag of results (one win, two losses), coach Ashley Westwood had plenty of positives to bring back with him.

    The tournament would also be a good indicator of how well Westwood’s summer signings have integrated with Bengaluru's style of play. The club acquired a marquee player in midfielder Joshua Walker along with Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Lalchhuanmawia Fanai, Udanta Kumam and Lalthuammawia Ralte.

    "We are looking forward to competing in this cup competition which has a lot of history. It gives us the chance to try some new things with different combinations of players while we search for our best 11 in preparation for the upcoming I-League. Obviously, we would like to do well but we have the luxury of the I-League trophy in the cabinet. So, we would like to go into this tournament relaxed but focused and try to enjoy it," said Westwood.

    Westwood expressed his happiness at Mohammedan's participation which shrouded in uncertainty after reports of the club pulling out of all competitions began to surface only last week. "We face Mohammedan who will provide us a good and competitive opposition and we are really thankful that they have been able to organise themselves to participate. It would have been a shame if they would have gone out of business considering they have contributed so much to Indian football over the years."

    Mohammedan were crowned champions last year after beating ONGC 2-1 in the final and Bengaluru FC are well aware that they will be up against a team that has much to gain from defending their title.

    The traveling squad

    Goalkeepers: Pawan Kumar, Lalthuammawia Ralte

    Defenders: Rino Anto, John Johnson, Curtis Osano, Keegan Pereira, Lalchhuanmawia Fanai, Vishal Kumar, NS Manju and Gurtej Singh

    Midfielders: Joshua Walker, Thoi Singh, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Darren Caldeira, Beikhokhei Beingaichho, CK Vineeth and Siam Hanghal

    Strikers: Robin Singh, Sunil Chhetri, Sean Rooney, Udanta Kumam

    PUNE FC REACH IN THE DURAND CUP FINAL FOR FIRST TIME

     DURAND CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    06.11.2014: SEMI-2: PUNE FC --- 2-1 --- SPORTING GOA
    SCG : Boima Karpeh 23'
    PFC : Bineesh 19', Sueoka 62'
    SCG : Kamaljit,Chinta, Joyner, Clemente, Royston, Cajetan, Mauvin, Karpeh, Wolfe, Cresson, Velito.
    PFC : Amrinder, Srikanth, Luciano, Ranjan, Matthew, Arata, Ganesh, Lalrempuia, Sueoka, Bineesh, Prakash.

    PFC PRESS RELEASE : Pune FC qualified for a historic final in the prestigious Durand Cup with a stunning 2-1 win over home side Sporting Clube de Goa in the semifinals at the Raia Sports Complex in Raia on Thursday. The win was Pune FC's third in a row and helped them qualify for their first ever final in Asia's oldest football competition in seven years since inception.

    The semifinal match was filled with drama all throughout. A volleyed goal, a long range strike, a freekick, a controversial penalty and a penalty save all made up for an exciting game of football. Striker Bineesh Balan (19th minute) opened scoring for Pune FC before Sporting striker Boima Karpeh equalised (23rd) moments later. However, playmaker Ryuji Sueoka’s 62nd minute strike turned out to be the winner for Pune FC. Contributing to the win was also keeper Amrinder Singh, who saved a penalty kick in the final ten minutes of the game.

    Going into the clash, Pune FC Coach Karim Bencherifa made three changes handing starts to keeper Amrinder Singh, defender Srikanth Ramu and medio Lalrempuia Fanai. Both sides began the game on the offensive and created a few half chances early on in the opening quarter. Pune FC were the first to go close when striker Prakash Thorat was sent clear by Sueoka, but his effort from close was saved by the keeper in the 12th minute.

    After a period domination, Pune FC finally took the lead in the 19th minute. After getting into the clear on the right, Lalrempuia floated in a cross at the far post. Bineesh timed his run to perfection and fired in a first time acrobatic volley scoring for the second consecutive game.

    Just as Pune FC relaxed a bit, striker Karpeh made them pay. A misunderstanding between defenders Srikanth Ramu and Saam Ranjan Singh allowed the ex-Pune FC striker to capitalise and he made no mistake in scoring from range to restore parity. Both sides kept on pressing in the final stages of the first half, but fell short in the final third as the half ended 1-1.

    The second half began with Sporting pushing ahead continuously. Having soaked pressure early on in the second half, Pune FC settled down and started creating chances. Skipper Arata Izumi did well to earn freekick just outside the Sporting box on the right at the hour mark. Playmaker Sueoka stepped up, and sent in a beautiful curling shot at the far post which left the Sporting custodian grounded to restore Pune FC's one goal lead.

    In the final half hour, the game turned physical with a lot of tackles flying from both sides. However, Pune FC continued to push ahead and went close on a couple of occasions. Midway through the half, striker Prakash Thorat controlled the ball in the Pune FC half and set on a wonderful solo. He covered the entire pitch but was dispossessed in the opponent’s box as he tried to slow down.

    Minutes later, Dhanpal Ganesh dispossessed an opponent on the half line and set on a solo before he shot was blocked on the edge of the box. At the other end, medio Cajetan Fernandes went close on a couple of occasions from distance but was denied by some good goalkeeping by Amrinder.

    Into the final ten minutes, Sporting were handed a lifeline by the referee who controversially pointed to the spot after Karpeh went down too easily to Luciano Sabrosa's challenge inside the box. However, Anthony Wolfe's attempt from the penalty spot was brilliantly saved by keeper Amrinder who dived to his left and impressed further by holding on to the loose ball. Thereafter, Pune FC kept their calm in the closing stages of the game and held on for a famous win. Pune FC will now face another Goan-side Salgaocar FC in the big final on November 8th at 3.00 PM IST.

    =============================================

    02.11.2014: Sporting Goa 4-1 Air India
    scg : bOIMA Karpeh 15' (pen.), C. Fernandes 28', Clemente 45+1', Anthony Wolfe 64'
    AIR : Neil Gaikwad 68'

     DURAND CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    Sporting Clube de Goa hammer Air India to move into Semi's

    02.11.2014: SCG PRESS RELEASE : Courageous Sporting Clube de Goa moved into the semi-finals after hammering Air India 4-1 in the final group B match of the Durand Cup at Raia Panchayat ground, on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Sporting Goa led 3-0 at the interval.

    Sporting Goa Coach Oscar Bruzon made two changes to the starting line up from the previous game. Creson Antao came into the defence in place of Keenan Almeida, while local boy Velito Cruz was drafted into the midfield to fill the boots of Rowllin Borges.

    Sporting Goa surged ahead inside the first fifteen minutes after Anthony Wolfe was sent crashing to the ground inside the box. Captain Boima Karpeh stepped up to place home the resulting penalty for the Flaming Oranje.

    Sporting Goa started to dominate proceedings and it was not too long before they doubled their lead when Cajetan Fernandes tapped in a rebound after Anthony Wolfe's stinging drive was parried by the Air India goalkeeper.

    Just before the lemon break, Joseph Clemente produced a moment of magic as he struck an absolute gem of a shot from 30 yards which looped in over the goalkeeper's head and sent the surprised crowd into raptures.

    Post resumption, Sporting Goa continued where they left off by switching the attack from flank to flank. Sporting Goa's Anthony Wolfe who was looking menacing all game, sprung up to slot in the fourth to put the Goan outfit in a commanding position.

    In the closing stages, Air India came up with a deserving goal through substitute Neil Gaikwad, but it proved nothing more than a consolation for his side.

    SEMI FINALS - 1

    06.11.2014: SALGAOCAR BEAT BENGALURU FC VIA TIE BREAKER TO REACH IN THE FINAL

     DURANd CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    06.11.2014: SALGAOCAR SC 0-0, 5-4 (pen) BENGALURU SC FC ( SEMI FINAL)

    SALGAOCAR SC PRESS RELEASE : Ultimately, 120 minutes of action packed football were decided by Goalkeeper Karanjit Singh, as he pulled off a save of Sunil Chhetri's second penalty to enable Salgaocar FC overcome Bengaluru FC (5-4) via penalty shootout in the first semi-final of the 127th Durand Cup, played at Raia Panchayat ground, here this morning.

    With both the teams failing to break the deadlock after extra time, the game went down to penalties. Salgaocar FC held their nerve to score all the five penalties through Gilbert Oliveira, Rocus Lamare, and substitutes Nicolau Colaco, Drryl Duffy & Zakeer Mundampara, the last named being introduced by coach Derrick Pereira with seconds to go for the final whistle in place of Zambian, Francis Kasonde.

    Salgaocar FC's keeper Karanjit Singh who pulled off a couple of good saves in the regulation time, came to his side's rescue with an exceptional double save in extra time to keep the Greens in the game. In the shoot-out, his diving save off Sunil Chhetri's spot kick ultimately proved to be the difference between the two sides and ensure the Greens a passage to their third Durand Cup final.

    For Bengaluru FC, Joshua Walker, John Johnson and substitutes K Udanta Singh and Evgeneson Lyngdoh were on target.

    Bengaluru FC started well and dominated possession through the game. However, Salgaocar FC were content to allow their opponents pass the ball around and looked to hit them on the counter. Robin Singh came closest to scoring in the first period as his left footer from the inside the box smashed against the upright whilst Bikash Jairu’s left foot scorcher from the top of the box also crashed against the upright in extra-time for Salgaocar FC.

    For the Greens, in addition to Karanjit Singh, defender Augustin Fernandes also had an outstanding game and effected yet another unbelievable goal-line save at the very death. For the Blues, Josh Walker took centre stage with his commanding presence in central midfield.

    The two-time champions now meet the winners of the second semi-final between Sporting Clube de Goa and Pune FC to be played this evening in the final scheduled for November 8th.

    PUNE FC vs Salgaocar SC: Preview of 127th Durand Cup Final

    08.11.2014 : PUNE FC 0-1 SALGAOCAR SC ( FT.)
    SAL : Saran Singh 20'
    PFC : Amrinder, Prakash, Luciano, Matthew, Ralte, Ganesh, Ranjan, Puia, Bineesh, Arata, Sueoka.
    SAL : Karanjit, Pawan, Augustin, Gurjinder, Brian, Gilbert, Nicholau, Douhou, Saran, Rocus, Duffy.

    FULL TIME : SALGAOCAR SC WIN THE 127TH EDITION OF DURAND CUP 2014 BEAT PUNE FC 1-0.
    90': 4 minute added time.
    80': Score line is Salgaocar SC 1-0 Pune FC.
    77': PLAYER CHANGE - SALGAOCAR : Duffy out and Aslon in.
    74': PLAYER CHANGE - PUNE : Eric Brown in and Luciano out
    74': PLAYER CHANGE - PUNE : Mummtaj in and Beenesh Balan out

    ================ MATCH REPORT ===================
    Salgaocar Sports Club lifts the 127th edition of Durand Cup. At Goa today they defeated Pune FC by a solitary goal and lifts the cup for the third time. Earlier they were the winners of the Durand Cup in 1999 and 2003.

    It was a perfect situation for Salgaocar to win the cup in front of the home crowd. Dereek Perira urged the Salgaocar fanatics to present in numbers at the stadium and to cheer for the club. It was an absolutely packed Raia Panchayat Ground even at 3pm in the afternoon under the scorching heat and humid conditions.

    Salgaocar scored at the 20th minute of the first session when Sharan Singh converted. A forward pass from Douhou Piere from the middle third was gently placed by Sharan Singh beating Ararindra towards his left from the top of the 18 yards. Pune FC had some opportunities later in the first session leading by Sueoka and Arata but unable to yield any result.

    In the second session Karim Bensharifa had some tactical changes when he replaced Erik Brown and Mumtaz Aktar. Pune FC dominated all through the second session created a number of chances but unable to convert. All credit should be given to Karanjit Singh who had a brilliant time under the bar denied Pune FC in numerous occasion.
    ==============================================

    72': Score line is Salgaocar SC 1-0 Pune FC.
    70': Pune's Arata's well effort but went out.
    63': PLAYER CHANGE - SALGAOCAR : Bikash Jairu in and Gilbert out.
    60': 1-0 still for Salgaocar.
    52': Luciano cleared and attack of Salgaocar.
    50': SALGAOCAR 1-0 PUNE FC
    46': Starts of 2nd half match.
    HT : Score line is Salgaocar SC 1-0 Pune FC.
    45': 3 minutes added time.
    42': Corner to Salgaocar, Saran Singh's shot and Augastine header went wide.
    41': Puia of Pune missed a chance.
    40': SALGAOCAR 1-0 PUNE FC
    35': Miss pass of Puia towards Bineesh of Pune.
    34': PUNE FC REACH IN THE DURAND CUP FINAL FOR THE FIRST TIME.
    32': Attack of Pune but Salgaocar Keeper was alert to save Seuoka-Puia combine attack.
    30': Yellow Card - Gilbert of Salgaocar.
    25': SALGAOCAR 1-0 PUNE FC
    22': YELLOW CARD - Ralte of Pune FC.
    20': GOAAAAAALLLL : Salgaocar is leading. Saran Singh scored from Douhou's pass
    19': PLAYER CHANGE - PUNE : Sohaib in and Prakash Thorat out.
    15': Still 0-0 is the scoreline.
    14': Free kick to Pune but karanjit saved the free kick of Seuoka.
    10': 0-0 is the score line.
    9': 2nd corner of Pune. Seuoka's corner cleared.
    8': Augastine Fernandez cleared Seuoka's attack.
    5': Corner to Pune FC. Arata's coner cleared.
    5': 0-0 is the score line.
    0': Jam Packed Stadium in Goa.


    ==================================================

     DURAND CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    salgaocar Sports Club of Goa and Pune FC will going to clash in the Final of the 127th edition of Durand Cup at the Raja Panchait ground at Goa. salgaocar had won the tournament in 1999 and 2003 defeating East Bengal Club of kolkata in both the occasions, while this is Pune FC's maiden entry in the tournament. Durand Cup, one of the oldest tournament in Asia started in the year 1888 at Delhi. But this year organizers decided to shift the venue at Goa.

    The final of the Durand Cup promises to be a competitive as both the top ranking clubs of I league are confident to bag the trophy. salgaocar won the semifinal when the defeated the defending champions of I league Bangaluru FC by a margin of 5-4 in tie breaker, while Pune FC edged past Sporting Clube de Goa by odd goal to two. salgaocar are having a good pre season under their coach Derick Perira who shifted from Pune FC this year. Even they are quite impressive in the tournament so far.

    Karanjit Singh, Douhou Pierre, Gurjinder Kumar and Othallo Tabia are the tower of strength in salgaocar's line up. While interacting Derick Perira, the salgaocar coach said, "are delighted to have overcome Bengaluru FC in a very tightly contested semi-final that has done the boys' confidence a world of good. We are all geared up and are extremely focussed on the final, knowing we are just one step away from winning this prestigious tournament.

     DURAND CUP TOURNAMENT 2014 GOA

    We have worked extremely hard since the start of the season and it's about executing and implementing everything we’ve practiced on the training ground on the big day. For a lot of the boys, it is their first ever Durand Cup final and I really want them to enjoy the occasion".

    Pune FC on the contrary are confident enough to win the tournament in their maiden appearance. Karim Bensharifa, is an experienced man in Indian football has the ability to create wonders at any point of time. The Pune midfield comprises of Ryuji Seouka, Izumi Arata and Beenesish Balan can be reckoned as one of the strongest midfield in the country. Pune Fc will have to depend on Luciano Sabrosa and Raju Yumnam in central defense. Though the Red lizards will going to miss the service of six footballers who are booked during the course of the tournament. The Pune FC coach Karim Bensharifa is optimistic to win the final.

    While talking to the media he said, “We worked very hard in the preseason and that is paying off now. Despite having just one day between games at this stage, the players are coping with that very well. I feel that Pune FC is a team that deserves to have a trophy. It won't be easy but if we can win the Durand Cup, it will set us on a right path as a club."

    The match will be kicked of at 3pm on Saturday.

    HEAD-2-HEAD

    04/04/14 : L-League : Pune FC 1-2 Salgaocar FC
    22/11/13 : L-League : Salgaocar FC 0-3 Pune FC
    02/02/13 : L-League : Pune FC 0-2 Salgaocar FC
    09/12/12 : L-League : Salgaocar FC 0-2 Pune FC
    24/09/12 : L-League : Pune FC 1-2 Salgaocar FC