Tue. Dec 7th, 2021

    FC Goa are one of the formidable sides in the Indian Super League (ISL) given their record of having missed out on a play-off berth just once in seven seasons. However, what remains an unfulfilled dream is the fact that they haven’t won the ISL title as yet. Yes, they have won the ISL League Winner’s Shield back in 2019-20 under the guidance of Sergio Lobera but have always faltered in the knock-out games of the ISL.

    When other ISL outfits chose to send their second-string side for the Durand Cup, it was FC Goa who fielded their best players and approached the tournament with utmost seriousness which saw them clinch the tournament.

    FC Goa Squad

    Goalkeepers: Dheeraj Singh, Shubham Dhas, Naveen Kumar. 

    Defenders:  Sanson Pereira, Ivan Gonzalez, Leander D’Cunha, Dylan Fox, Seriton Fernandes, Saviour Gama, Aibanbha Dohling, Mohammed Ali, Flan Gomes. 

    Midfielders: Alberto Noguera, Brandon Fernandes, Glan Martins, Alexander Romario Jesuraj, Redeem Tlang, Edu Bedia, Devendra Murgaonkar, Aaren D’Silva, Muhammed Nemil, Christy Molly Davis. 

    Forwards:  Airam Cabrera, Jorge Ortiz, Makan Chote. 

    What are the strengths of FC Goa? 

    FC Goa have not tinkered much with the core of their squad. Apart from Igor Angulo, they have managed to hold on to their key overseas players like Edu Bedia, Jorge Ortiz, Ivan Gonzalez, and Alberto Noguera. Carlos Pena has been released and he has been replaced by Dylan Fox who was one of the better performing defenders in the previous ISL campaign. 

    Edu Bedia will once again be a key player in midfield. He was used from a deeper position by Ferrando in the previous season. Glan Martins has improved with each passing game and his partnership with Bedia will be important for FC Goa to dominate proceedings in the middle of the park.

    Jorge Ortiz is a livewire in attack and FC Goa would hope that he continues his form from last campaign. Much will be expected of winger Romario Jesuraj, who is his debut season, put in an impressive shift on the right. Brandon Fernandes, who is among the best Indian creative midfielder, will look to be injury-free this season and play an important role in the club’s quest to win their first ISL title.

    Dheeraj Singh has been in sublime form for FC Goa and the India Under-23 set-up. Certainly, his presence in between the sticks will ease the nerves of Goan faithful.

    What are the weaknesses of FC Goa? 

    The club doesn’t have a solid Indian centre-back in their ranks which further reduces the options for Ferrando when naming his starting eleven. In a season where only four foreign players are allowed in the line-up, Goa would have to play with two foreign centre-back which would cripple Ferrando’s options in attack when it comes to naming the foreign contingent. 

    New signing Airam Cabrera has only six appearances, just one start, for Poland’s Wisla Plock last season. The Polish club had a chance to extend his contract but chose to let him go. In the 2019-20, he plies his trade in the Spanish Segunda Division for Extremadura UD scoring once and having two assists in 12 appearances. Certainly, these statistics do not inspire belief that he can replace Igor Angulo, who came to Goa last season on the back of 16 goals in 36 matches for Górnik Zabrze in Poland.

    Who are the key players of FC Goa? 

    The three key players of FC Goa who will make the difference are Edu Bedia, Dheeraj Singh and Jorge Ortiz.

    What are the fixtures of FC Goa? 

    Date Fixture Time Venue
    November 22Mumbai City FC vs FC Goa 19:30PJN Stadium, Fatorda
    November 26FC Goa vs Jamshedpur FC19:30Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
    December 04NorthEast United FC vs FC Goa 19:30PJN Stadium, Fatorda
    December 07SC East Bengal vs FC Goa 19:30Tilak Maidan Stadium
    December 11FC Goa vs Bengaluru FC21:30Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
    December 18FC Goa vs Hyderabad FC21:30Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
    December 24Odisha vs FC Goa 19:30Tilak Maidan Stadium
    December 29ATK Mohun Bagan vs FC Goa19:30PJN Stadium, Fatorda
    January 2Kerala Blasters vs FC Goa 19:30Tilak Maidan Stadium
    January 8FC Goa vs Chennaiyin FC21:30Athletic Stadium, Bambolim
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