Jagrick Dey, Bhubaneswar: Indian Super League side FC Goa is set to face I-League giant East Bengal in the semifinal of the Super Cup at Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar tomorrow. But ahead of that, they are in huge trouble as only 8 players would be available to play for the side ahead of the much anticipated encounter. Five regular players, Pinheiro Bruno, Hugo Boumous, Sergio Marine, Brandon Fernandes and Pronay Halder are already out of contest due to card problem. Today FC Goa coach Derrick Pereira confirmed www.xtratime.in that, four other players and a total of 9 players are out of the team.”Manu Lanzarote, Naveen Kumar, Jonathan Cardozo and Sana Konsham all have injuries and they won’t be a part of the semifinal,” said Derick.
This will be the first time in Indian football that a team would go to the field with just 8 players, which is a major blow for the Goa based outfit.” There may be only 8 players on the field tomorrow. We had 14 players after 5 players were suspended for cards. Among them four are injured and we have currently 10 players in hand and among them two are goal-keepers. So you can understand the current position of our team. But what I can say that our 8 players will give their everything to win the match against a side like East Bengal,” said Derrick Pereira.
On the other hand, Khalid brigade did a full fledged practice ahead of the game today. Coach Khalid Jamil and TD Subhash Bhowmick concentrated on situation practice and beside that the players also worked hard on set pieces.
The Red & Gold coach is not taking FC Goa lightly despite they don’t have a lot of key players.” We have to be focused on our game like last two games. Goa is a very good side and it will be a tough match,” said coach Khalid Jamil.
On being asked about that 9 players will not be available for Goa side, Khalid replied,” This can happen to any side on any day; the main thing is who wins the game at the end. I know Derrick very well, he knows me as well. It will be a good game.”
Khalid further added that Dudu is absolutely fine ahead of the big semifinal and he is only thinking of the game.
East Bengal’s star defender Eduardo Ferriera heaped praise about their defence line ahead of the game.” We have just conceded 8 goals in our last 10 games, our team is the best and we are up for the challenge, said Eduardo.