An absorbing tussle is on the cards as formidable Goa, gunning for their fourth title triumph, lock horns with a well-knit Maharashtra.
An absorbing tussle is on the cards as formidable Goa, gunning for their fourth title triumph, lock horns with a well-knit Maharashtra in the final of Air India Express Santosh Trophy football championship tomorrow.
A prediction on the outcome will be hazardous since both teams have shown improvement as the tournament has progressed.
However, the Goans have had a tremendous run of success so far and enjoy the psychological advantage of having scored 41 goals in the competition so far, while conceding only one.
Though enjoying a slight edge, the Goans' task will not be easy as the young Maharashtra outfit has become better with every outing and the players are in peak form.
"The morale of the team is very good and the players are raring to go. I expect the team to come out with the same type of performance as they had shown in earlier matches," an optimistic Goan coach Mauricio Afonso said.
Except captain Samir Naik, who did not play in the semifinal against Punjab, all other players were fit, he said.
Goa has won the prestigious cup thrice. In 1983, they shared the trophy with West Bengal at Kolkata, in 1984 won the laurels at Chennai and again in 1990 at home.
Maharashtra's progress has been praiseworthy, since it had to overcome the challenges posed by tough teams, including former champions Services and 29-time winners West Bengal, who were beaten 2-0. (PTI)
Story first published on: Sunday, 20 November 2005 17:30