GOA FOOTBALL TOURNAMENT : 2nd AWES Cup 2018 to kick off on Tuesday 28th August

27.08.2018 : AWES PRESS RELEASE : The new footballing season kicks off in Goa with the season opening 2nd AWES Cup kicking off tomorrow with the opening match between defending champions Dempo Sports Club and FC Goa.

After the success of the inaugural 12 team tournament at Duler last season, the second edition of the tournament will feature star ISL players like Emiliano Alfaro and Marcelinho who are expected to play for FC Pune City this year. I-League side Gokulam FC, who were finalists last season after losing to Dempo SC via the penalty shoot-out, will also be playing in the tournament along with ONGC. Local powerhouses Dempo SC, Salgaocar FC, Sporting Clube de Goa, FC Goa Development squad and Sesa FA will complete the eight team roster.

The tournament will be held in a group cum knockout format with the eight teams being divided into two groups of four teams each. The top two teams from each group will qualify for the semi-finals.

Last season’s Indian Super League semi-finalists, FC Pune City who participated in the tournament last year with their development squad have opted to play the tournament this year with their first team squad in preparation for the fifth edition of the ISL which kicks off on 29th September. The team has retained the services of Brazilian playmaker Marcelinho, his fellow countryman Diego and Uruguayan Emiliano Alfaro, who were all stand out performers last season. They have also added ISL’s highest goal scorer Iain Hume, to their squad this year. Local lads Adil Khan, Keenan Almeida and Gabriel Fernandes will add to the Goan connect.

Last season’s finalists Gokulam FC from Kerala will have a new look side as they prepare for yet another season in the I-League. After languishing at the bottom for the most of last season, a stunning revival towards the end of the I-League saw them finish a respectable seventh. Coach Bino George has been promoted as Technical Director. With the signings of Argentinian centre back Fabricio Ortiz and Uzbek defender Evgeniy Kochnev, the team from Kerala will be hoping that the 2nd AWES Cup serves as a perfect preparation before the start of the I-League.

Defending Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) League winners ONGC too will be no pushovers with reports that the team may rope in two new foreigners for the tournament. ONGC last season gave a good account of themselves narrowly losing to Calangute Association and Dempo SC in their group matches.

These are troubled times for Goan football. After the withdrawal of Sporting Clube de Goa, Salgaocar FC and Dempo SC from the I-League, Goa’s lone representative Churchill Brothers SC were also relegated last season. However this is one tournament that would provide the Goan clubs an opportunity to rub shoulders and test themselves against the best in India. After having retained the core of their team, Dempo SC would look to defend their title with a mix of experienced players and some youngsters from their youth development programmes. Salgaocar SC have also opted to go with youth this season and would look to give the bigger clubs a run for their money. Sporting Clube de Goa look a strong team on paper after completing a domestic double last year winning the Goa League and the Police Cup. They have retained the same team as last season and would be one of the stronger sides along with the FC Goa development squad who now have the cream of young talent in Goa. The Clifford Miranda coached side have signed some exciting young players like Kapil Hoble and Nestor Dias in addition to retaining most of their players from last season.

Sesa Football Academy will make their debut in the AWES Cup this year with their young team hoping to use this experience as a learning curve for tougher challenges in the future.

GOA FOOTBALL TOURNAMENT : 2nd AWES Cup 2018 to kick off on Tuesday 28th August

23.08.2018 : AWES PRESS RELEASE : Indian Super League (ISL) semifinalists FC Pune City will be the big attraction for Goan football lovers at the second edition of the AWES Cup, organised by Association for the Wellbeing of Elder Sportspersons (AWES) in collaboration with the Sports Authority of Goa (SAG) and Dempo Sports Club (Juniors), at Tilak Maidan, Vasco.

The tournament kicks off on Tuesday, August 28 with a high-octane clash between defending champions Dempo Sports Club and FC Goa. All matches will kick off at 4pm while the final on September 15 will be played under lights. Besides Dempo and FC Goa, the other Goan teams who will be seen in action include Goa Pro League champions Sporting Clube de Goa, Salgaocar FC and Sesa Football Academy.

I-League side Gokulam FC from Kerala and Mumbai District Football Association (MDFA) League winners ONGC are returning for the second edition, while unlike the first season when Pune City sent their reserve squad, they will be here with their first team which will include high-profile foreign stars like the Brazilian striker Marcelinho, Uruguayan forward Emiliano Alfaro and ISL’s highest goal scorer Iain Hume. Local lads Adil Khan, Keenan Almeida and Gabriel Fernandes will add to the Goan connect.

The teams have been divided into two groups. Group A includes Dempo SC, FC Goa, FC Pune City and Salgaocar FC. Teams like Gokulam FC, ONGC, Sporting Clube de Goa and Sesa Football Academy complete group B. “This is a good initiative by the organizers to generate funds which can sustain activities for elder sportspersons, who, in their prime, have brought laurels to the state. The SAG is happy to be a part of such an endeavour,” said SAG executive director, V M Prabhu Desai.

AWES was formed last year under the presidentship of former fisheries minister Avertano Furtado and has since then conducted several activities for the welfare of elder sportspersons.

“Ever since we started this organization early last year, we have depended on the generosity of individuals and organisations to take our mission forward. This is a cause that is close to each one of us and we will do everything we can to ensure that our elder sportspersons get the respect they deserve, even in the twilight of their lives,” said AWES President Avertano Furtado. The tournament is supported by FC Goa, Dempo, Salgaocar, Sporting Clube de Goa and Vedanta