Gokulam Kerala, TRAU face-off in virtual final on Hero I-League D-Day

KOLKATA: Gokulam Kerala will take on Tiddim Road Athletic Union (TRAU) in the final matchday as both sides aim for their maiden Hero I-League title. The game is set for a 5 PM IST kickoff at the Kishore Bharati Krirangan in Kolkata, West Bengal tomorrow (March 27, 2021), and the match will be broadcasted on 1Sports, whilst being live-streamed on their Facebook page.

After 14 rounds of games, three teams will be battling for the title- Gokulam Kerala, Churchill Brothers, and TRAU. All three sides have 26 points and are only differentiated by their head-to-head results. The equation is simple for Gokulam Kerala. Vincenzo Annese’s side needs to beat TRAU, and they will secure their first-ever Hero I-League title as the Malabrians lead second-placed Churchill Brothers on head-to-head record (2-0 loss, 3-2 win vs Churchill). They could also secure the championship with a draw if Churchill loses their game to RoundGlass Punjab.

However, Vincenzo Annese would rather prefer his team finish the job by beating TRAU. Speaking at the pre-match press conference, the GKFC head coach said, “This is a final for us, and we need to win this game. We are too excited, we cannot relax. The mood is fine, but we have just one thing on our mind- we need to win this game.”

“All our hard work, strengths, training sessions, formation- has led us here. Now, we have to finalize a few things. We have worked very hard to be here. This is a final game, many things can go wrong. We need to limit things we cannot control. We need to focus completely on the game and keep preparing ourselves continuously.”

“We beat TRAU seven games ago. It will be totally different as they will have Helder Lobato back in defense. They have quality in counterattacks. They are organized in defense, and quick in front of goal. Their two excellent midfielders- Phalguni and Kishan Singh who are brilliant passers of the ball and the team can run for the whole 90 minutes,” he adds about his opponents.

Midfielder Mohammed Rashid said, ”It is a dream come true for all players to be fighting for the Hero I-League title. All of us are focused, well-rested and prepared. We are positive that we will be taking the trophy home at the end of tomorrow.”

Like Gokulam, TRAU faces a similar equation if they want to lift the Hero I-League. If Nandakumar’s boys are able to beat Gokulam, they are likely to lift the trophy even if Churchill is able to beat RoundGlass Punjab in the other game. The Imphal-based club drew both its games with Churchill Brothers, but have a superior overall goal difference which would hand them the title.

However, it will not be an easy task for the Red Pythons as the Malabrians hold the edge over them. Emil Benny’s strike in the first half coupled with Sharif Mohammad’s and Zodingliana Ralte’s second-half strikes helped Gokulam to a 3-1 win over TRAU back when the two sides clashed in match week 8.

Speaking at the pre-match press conference, head coach Nandakumar said, “We have been preparing well and we are in a very good mindset before the game. I have also said earlier that with the talent of the players, we would surprise many in the tournament. Since the start, our aim was to be in the top-six. Being in the title race is a bonus.”

“After many positive results, I have immense confidence in my team. I cannot predict the result, but I can say my team is looking forward to playing this last game- a title-deciding match for us. I am sure they will give their 100 percent for the Hero I-League title. Whatever the result, I will be a very happy man.”

“Gokulam are one of the strongest teams. Their strike force is too good and composed in front of the goal. They have a good energetic coach leading a good set of players. They have many players who play in different positions, and it will be difficult to adapt to them. It will be a tough game against strong opposition,” Nandakumar added.

Goalkeeper Amrit Gope has put up some defying performances in goal for TRAU. He said, “We all are motivated after the last game and we have been looking forward to the game against Gokulam Kerala. We know we need to win this game, which will give us the championship. I believe the whole team is motivated and fired up for a win.”


For Trial related updates: Latest trials updates in Mumbai Football

Also Read: Manvir Singh header ensures Blue Tigers share spoils with Oman on International return

Follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram for all the latest happenings in the world of Indian football

Bengaluru FC Elite Youth Football Trials

Bengaluru Football Club is a professional club that competes in the Indian Super League (ISL) and are past champions of the I-League and ISL. The club has launched its Soccer…


Oscar SSE to conduct trials for Youth Teams

Mumbai based Oscar SSE will conduct trials for their youth teams on 12th December 2021 at Wings Sports Centre ground. Oscar SSE is a 2-star AIFF Accredited Academy plying their…


BBFS set to conduct trials for Residential Academy

Bhaichung Bhutia Football Schools Residential Academy are set to conduct trials for the 2022-23 season. Players born between 2005-2012 are eligible to take part. The trials will start from 14th…


Kenkre FC to conduct trials for their Youth team starting November 15

Mumbai based I league 2nd division outfit – Kenkre FC, will be conducting trials for their youth teams starting November 15th Kenkre FC had an excellent I league qualifiers campaign…


DK Pharma FC to conduct trials for MFA Elite Division

Mumbai Football Association Elite Division side D.K.Pharma FC will be conducting trials for their upcoming 2021-22 campaign. Having gradually come up in the Mumbai Football Pyramid, Badlapur based DK Pharma…


Lemon Break Sports FC to conduct trials for MFA 1st Division campaign

Lemon Break Sports FC is conducting trials for its first division side that will be playing in the MFA league for the upcoming season. Lemon Break SC is one of…


Kenkre FC to conduct trials for Senior Women’s Team

Mumbai-based Kenkre FC are slated to conduct trials for their Senior Women’s Football Team on the 9th of October at Neville Dsouza Ground, Bandra. Kenkre FC have long been regarded…


NLWS FC to hold trials for MDFA 3rd division

NLWS FC, a club based out of Dadar that will be playing in the MDFA 3rd division for the 2021-22 season will be holding trials next Sunday (10th October) Mauli…


Income Tax Football team to conduct trials for Elite Division Campaign

MDFA Elite Division side Income Tax Football team will be conducting trials for ‘Guest Players’ for its upcoming 2021-22 season. The team is now looking to rope in few ‘guest…


Oscar SSE to conduct trials for U 14 and U 16 category in Mumbai

Mumbai based Oscar SSE will conduct trials for their youth teams on 2nd and 3rd October at Wings Sports Centre ground. Oscar SSE is a 2-star AIFF Accredited Academy plying…