Margao: Salgaocar coach Karim Bencherifa said the defending champions conceded a silly goal as they lost 0-1 to arch-rivals Dempo in the opening match of the I-League at the Nehru Stadium here on Saturday.
"We conceded a very silly goal. It was a defensive lapse for a second and Ranti Martins scored from it. That is a quality of a good side. Congratulations to Dempo (for the win). It was a very competitive game, but I'm very proud with the performance of my boys," the Moroccan said.
Bencherifa, however, said that Salgaocar were the better side.
"We might have lost the match, but certainly Salgaocar were the better side today. When Dempo came in the game claiming they were underdogs, it makes me feel proud," he said.n.
"It may have looked like as if Dempo dominated, but we enjoyed possession for a longer time in the opponent's half. We had chances, but Dempo defended well. Let us not forget that we were playing a side with the best international players who play for India. Samir Naik and Debabrata Roy defended brilliantly and Mahesh Gawli deserved to be the man of the match," he said.