FC Goa almost became the first Indian football team to win a match in the AFC Champions League (ACL). However, Indian fans dejectedly saw Al Rayyan score at the 89th minute to draw 1-1 with FC Goa.
FC Goa had played out a 0-0 draw with Al Rayyan of Qatar in their first leg match.
The two side clashed in their second leg at Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Fatorda, Goa.
And FC Goa settled on a 1-1 tie with Al Rayyan for a Group E match in Margao yesterday.
The Early Goal
Jorge Ortiz gave FC Goa a lead in the third minute of the Group E match.
Brandon Fernandes shot out a long ball from over the top of the Al Rayyan back line.
Jorge Ortiz was there to receive it, though the Spaniard’s first attempt was thwarted by the keeper, Saud Al Hajiri.
But the forward remained persistent and reached the deflected ball first. He slid the ball into the back of the net with accuracy this time.
Despite this early lead, Goa squashed the opportunity of a historic victory with several misfired attempts to double their lead.
Also, in spite of the early 3rd-minute goal, FC Goa conceded domination in possession to Al Rayyan.
The guests had the majority of possession in the first half, though it was an even contest in the second session.
Al Rayyan Score at the 89th Minute to Draw 1-1 with FC Goa
After the entirety of the match being 1-0 for the hosts, Al Rayyan scored an equalizer one minute before full-time.
Ali Ferydoon equalised for the Qatar side with just a minute left in the regulation time.
FC Goa goalkeeper Dheeraj momentarily blocked a cross by Abdulaziz Hatem.
But Farydoon reacted quickest as the ball escaped Dheeraj and smashed the ball home to make it 1-1.
Head here for amore detailed match summary.
FC Goa Coach’s Words
Here is what Juan Ferrando, the head coach of FC Goa said in the post-match press conference:
“It is of course difficult when you lose in the last minute but the truth is we play against a very good teams. It’s a pleasure to play against Persepolis, Al Wahda and Al Rayyan because these teams play football.
“Okay some mistakes, it’s very important to control them. Today’s game was very important for us because you know in India, the situation is very difficult and we were thinking, if we win, may be it’s a good moment for Indian people, it’s very difficult for players, they were talking about playing for India. I know about these difficult moments.
“But in the minute, it’s football, one mistake in transition and it’s alright. It’s necessary for me to tell the players they did a great job. Of course, we need to improve.
“We have one more opportunity next against Al Wahda, I am now thinking about the next game. Lot of injuries, it is difficult to prepare the squad and the line-ups. The medical staff is working so hard at the moment, that is the truth.
About their errors in the match, he said: “The action for the goal in my opinion was in transition. I need to go back and see but I think it was a foul and then in this transition, from attack to defence, the team may not be ready.
“This is the difference between teams in India and for example, Al Rayyan. But it’s not possible to talk about mistake because I know my players and the goal in the last minute was a terrible moment for them. We will learn of course because one time (mistake) it’s okay but two times, no.
“But I think it’s good to play in this competition in Champions League because then we can talk about the problems and find solutions and practice that in the pitch,” he concluded.