FC Goa defeated Mohammedan SC 1-0 in the final of the 130th edition of the Durand Cup at the Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata on Sunday. Spaniard Edu Bedia scored the only legal goal of the encounter in the 105th minute to help the Gaurs lift the Shimla Trophy and the President’s Cup along with the Durand Cup in front of more than 43,000 fans.
Jagdeep Dhankhar was present to hand over the trophies to the victors.
Ahead of the kick-off as the fans started trickling into the stands, the weather had changed face thrice in the time it takes to play a half of football. It was Sunny, Rainy-Windy and then suddenly serious.
Azharuddin Mallick went into the referee’s book for his sliding tackle as the game started to take shape come the 13th minute.
In the 23rd minute, Marcus Joseph was set free down the left flank with his cross was thwarted by a last-ditch slide.
What started as harmless nudges had snowballed into lunges and shoves. As the clock neared 30, Shaher Shaheen went into the referee’s book.
With the game descending into late tackles and shift pulls, Milan Singh found the back of the net with a thunderous right footed shot from distance in the 34th minute. But the referee’s whistle punctured the deafening roar from the Black Panther supporters for a foul just before Milan’s foot had touched the ball.
Alexander Romario Jesuraj had a golden chance for the Gaurs in the 40th minute after Sanson Pereira found him in space on the edge of the box with a cutback but his shot sailed harmlessly over the bar.
The tackles turned to stare-offs and polite enquiries of the referee were replaced by desperate pleads for fouls. The referee seemed on the verge of flashing cards on multiple occasions but abstained.
Goa’s Devendra and Mohammedan’s Faisal had chances to score but had chances but wrong options and misplaced passes meant nothing came from them.
In extra time, Wayne Vaz had a header saved by Naveen Kumar in goal as the expectant Mohammedan fans egged on by their captain Nikola Stojanovic.
With the clock winding down in the first fifteen of extra time, Milan Singh brought down Alberto Noguera in a similar position that he had scored from. From the resulting free-kick
Edu Bedia took the ball and placed it to his liking, looked up and curled the ball past Zothanmawia in the Mohammedan goal. FC Goa were finally ahead at the stroke of the whistle.
In the second period of extra time, MSC had a couple of chances from corners as Naveen made frantic saves in goal for FC Goa to complete their heist.
FC Goa’s Naveen Kumar got the Golden Glove as Marcus Joseph claimed the Golden Boot and goalscorer in the final Edu Bedia won the Golden Ball for being ‘best player of the tournament’.