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Sporting Clube skipper Marcus misses penalty; Calangute Association return with a point

Duler: Calangute Association snatched a valuable point in the Goa Football Association (GFA) Professional League by holding a wasteful Sporting Clube de Goa 0-0 at Duler stadium on Monday.

Sporting Clube de Goa appeared wearing new shirts with Marcus Mascarenhas back into the fray but it was the last named who saw his penalty being saved by the Calangute goalkeeper to allow the beach side boys return home satisfied.

Sporting coach Francisco made three changes to his side which drew with Salgaocar FC in the last match with Marcus Mascarenhas back in the starting eleven and U-20 Delton Colaco and Shanon Viegas getting a feel of the game.

Calangute gaffer Sevirino Fernandes made no changes to his side following the team’s goalless draw against Sesa FA in the last match.

Marcus’ comeback in the lineup was clearly felt on the pitch as he made several attempts at the rival goal, but they were either thwarted by Calangute goalkeeper Sunil Bugde or missed the mark narrowly.

Sporting first clear look at the rival goal was in the 15th minute when George D’Souza tried to find his teammate Philip Odogwu in the box but Calangute defender Krishnanath Shirodkar cleared the danger before the striker could reach the ball.

Calangute got their first chance thereafter but first, Denson Fernandes saw his shot from inside deflect off the Sporting defender Alton Vaz before going out for a corner. A few minutes later, Siddhant Shirodkar, after getting hold off a long ball from Gaurav Vaigankar, shot over the crossbar – from inside the box – with just rival keeper at stake.

At the half-hour mark, Calangute midfielder Gaurav Kankonkar brilliantly snatched the ball from Delton and went for the glory from the edge of the box but his goal-bound strike was brilliantly fisted over the crossbar by Sporting keeper Melroy Fernandes.

Another opportunity went in vain for the Calangute team in the 38th minute when Daryl Costa made a lob to Denson, who in turn, set up onrushing Alesh Sawant just outside the box, but his shot hit Sporting defender before going out for a corner.

After a midfield play in the first quarter of the second session, Sporting came close to scoring in the 64th minute when Girish Naik sent a perfect through pass to Marcus in the box but his goal bound strike hit Calangute defender Joaquim Carvalho before going out for a corner.

Sporting had a golden opportunity to take the lead in the 75th minute when George made a cross to Philip in the box whose header was handled by Calangute defender. Referee Sunil Nanodkar pointed towards the penalty spot but Sporting skipper Marcus failed to put the ball in as  Calangute keeper Sanij stretched to his limit to block the ball and Marcus could not capitalise on the rebound that fell at his feet as Sunil again rose to the occasion.

Calangute came close to scoring in the 81st minute when Alesh sent a through-pass to substitute Chandan Govenkar but his shot was brilliantly pushed for a corner by Sporting keeper Melroy.

Frustrated by the failure of their attackers, Sporting coach used all his substitution bringing in Akeraj Martin, Peter Carvalho and Stendly Fernandes but none could make any difference to the team’s style of play.

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