St Christopher FC settle as runners-up
KUWAIT CITY, Nov 20: Pasha Boys, against all odds, beat St Christopher (Tivim) 4-3 in a penalty shootout to win the 7-a-side Goan Football League tournament played at the Bayan Grounds.
Both teams played attacking, fast-paced football but failed to break the deadlock during regulation time. For the champions, captain Joaquim Pacheco and Shawn Rodrigues excelled in front supported by well-organized defence with goalkeeper Sylvestre a hard nut to crack.
For St Christopher’s Godfrey, Mairon and Martin played exceptional soccer displaying skill and precision but could not find the back of the net.
In the tie-breaker Shawn Rodrigues, Rowell Romeo Pinto, Joaquim Valario Pacheco and Noel Fernandes scored for the champions while only Martin Gomes couldn’t get his name on the score sheet for St Christopher.
The innovative idea to organize the Goan Football League was conceptualized by Manuel D’Costa and Austine Abreo, for the first time in the history of Indian football in Kuwait after a span of 40 years in Kuwait when the Sour Ground in downtown Kuwait City was a familiar spot where different Indian soccer teams some representing their regions fought for supremacy.
The participating teams in the tournament were St. Rita, Maina; Holy Spirit, Margao; Miracles SC, Pasha Boys (Bardez); Navelim Stars, Capxem Boys, CRC Chinchinim, Goa Strikers, St Christopher FC, Dynamos FC, Le Blues and Amigos de Jardine.
The core committee of Goan Football Association, Kuwait (GFAK) consisted of Manuel D’Costa, Austine Abreo, Melvin Fernandes, Agricio D’Mello, Salvador Dias, Cajetan Fernandes, Marshall Fernandes, Carlos Fernandes, etc.
Speaking on the occasion, chief coordinator Manuel D’Costa thanked everyone associated with GFA for their relentless support for the league. He said the idea was to make Goan football more prominent and encouraging the young talent among Goans in Kuwait.
The prize distribution ceremony saw the Goa Strikers walking away with the prestigious Fair Play Award; the trophy was donated by Agricio D’Mello in memory of his late father.
Special ‘service’ mementos were presented to Merwyn Pereira, Gasper Crasto, Hudson Fernandes, Russel Fernandes and Rivon Gomes.
The other prizes were in the following order, Outstanding Senior Player – Philip Ferrao (Miracles SC); First Scorer of the Final – Shawn Rodrigues (Pasha Boys); Top Goal Scorer of the League – Mairon Fernandes (St Christopher); Best Goalkeeper of the Final – Silvestre Fernandes (Pasha Boys); Best Defender of the Final – Mairon Fernades (St Christopher FC); Best Midfielder of the Final – Shawn Rodrigues (Pasha Boys) and Best Striker of the Final – Noel Fernandes (Pasha Boys).
The prizes were given away by Cajetan Fernandes, Manuel D’Costa, Veterans United Members, Austine Abreo, Shawny of Global Logistics, Brian Gomes, Agricio D’Mello, Marshal Fernandes, Salvador Dias, Melvin Fernandes, Carlos Fernandes, Melvin Fernandes, Gasper Almeida, and Lawrence Pinto.
The Chief Guest for the evening was a well-known personality among the soccer fraternity Lawrence Pinto who in his speech praised the efforts of the Goan Football Association for organizing this league for the benefit of the Goan football lovers.
Austine Abreo, proposed the vote of thanks.
DJ Russel provided the sound and music for the finals while Hudson Fernandes did the honors on the inaugural day. The moments were captured on camera by Kuwait’s well-known photographer Rivon Gomes and Felix Fernandes.
During the half time, a Konkani video song titled ‘Football’ was screened to the delight of the crowd. The catchy lyrics and mind blowing music for this presentation was specially composed for Goan Football Association, Kuwait by Mario de Majorda, a writer, director, actor, composer and singer.
The organizers thanked the officials, sponsors and well-wishers.