FC Goa face Chennaiyin FC test in Durand Cup quarter-finals

Goa, August 25, 2023: After wrapping up the group stages of the ongoing 2023 Durand Cup as the toppers of Group D, FC Goa are set to face fellow-Indian Super League (ISL) outfit Chennaiyin FC in the quarter-finals of the competition.

The high-voltage encounter, featuring two full-strength teams, will take place at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium (IGAS) in Guwahati on Saturday. The Gaurs played all of their group games at the same venue.

Both teams are yet to suffer defeat in the competition this season. Chennaiyin FC have the better record between the two sides, having won all three of their Group E matches – against Hyderabad FC, Delhi FC and Nepal-based Tribhuwan Army FC. The Southerners, like Goa, also qualified to the Durand Cup knockouts as group toppers.

The Men in Orange, meanwhile, defeated Shillong Lajong FC 6-0 and Downtown Heroes FC 3-0, along with holding NorthEast United FC to a 2-2 draw in Group D.

“We’ve had a good start to the season, and that has helped in building our confidence as well. We’d now like to keep this going, and head to the ISL on a strong note,” FC Goa captain Brandon Fernandes said on Friday.

“Chennaiyin FC presents us with our toughest test so far in the ongoing Durand Cup. They did well in the group stage and are in good form. We had a good outing during our group stage as well, but we could have been better in terms of performance, both defensively and in terms of attacking.

“That said, we’re confident in ourselves, and can bring our a-game to the pitch tomorrow. We aim for nothing less than a win, and will give it our all,” he further added.

The FC Goa think-tank, led by head coach Manolo Marquez, has so far handed minutes to almost every player in the Club’s Durand Cup squad. New signing Carl McHugh is also expected to play a role for the Gaurs in the knockout stages of the competition.

With four goals in three matches which includes a hattrick against Shillong Lajong, Moroccan international Noah Sadaoui leads the attack for the Men in Orange. Carlos Martinez and Rowllin Borges have scored twice each so far.

In defence, the partnership between Odei Onaindia and Sandesh Jhingan continues to attract eyeballs. The pair have conceded just twice so far in the tournament, one of which was an unfortunate own-goal by the Indian international.

The FC Goa – Chennaiyin FC clash in the Durand Cup kicks off at 6:00 pm IST on Saturday. The match will be streamed live on SonyLIV. The live telecast of the game will be available across India, on the Sony TEN 2 TV and Sony TEN 2 HD TV channels.

About FC Goa

FC Goa is a professional football club based out of Goa that competes in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL). Nicknamed the Gaurs, FC Goa has been one of the most consistently successful teams in the ISL – reaching 4 semi-finals and 2 finals in 9 seasons.

Heading into the 2023-24 season of the Hero ISL, FC Goa hold the record for the most goals, joint-most golden boots and most number of playoff appearances (6 in total) in the history of the competition.

In 2020, FC Goa also became the first team from India to qualify for the league stages of the AFC Champions League, by virtue of winning the first-ever Hero ISL League Winners Shield in the 2019-20 season.

The Gaurs’ trophy cabinet is further adorned by the 2019 Super Cup, the 2018-19 Goa Pro League, the 2020 Goa Police Cup and the 2021 Durand Cup.

Co-owned by Mr Jaydev Mody, Mr Akshay Tandon and Mr Virat Kohli, FC Goa is one of the few Indian Clubs to have a complete youth development ecosystem. Its U13, U15, U17, U18, U20 and Developmental Teams compete at the highest levels in Goa and India.

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