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Top of table Dempo take on JCT today

A thrilling contest is on the cards when title aspirants Dempo lock horns...

A thrilling contest is on the cards when title aspirants Dempo lock horns with JCT in their crucial 14th round match of the ONGC I-League at the Nehru Stadium Margao tomorrow.

Dempo, who are at the top of the table with 27 points from 13 matches, were unbeaten till the eleventh round. They got a rude shock when they lost to Mahindra United and East Bengal in their last two matches, and this has put pressure on them as they try to win the title for the second successive year.

Dempo have themselves to blame for their defeat against East Bengal in their last match as they wasted easy chances before going down by a self goal scored by defender Mahesh Gawli. Dempo’s playmaker Roberto Silva, who did not practice today, is down with diarrhoea, and is a doubtful starter. Defender Valeriano Rebello is nursing an ankle injury and will not play tomorrow. He will be replaced by Cresent Antao.

JCT’s loss against Churchill Bros has pushed them to third position, and they are two points behind Dempo. Dempo assistant coach Maurico Afonso said it’s a must-win situation. “Tomorrow we have no option but to go all out for a win,” stated Afonso.

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JCT coach Sukhwinder Singh said every match from now on is crucial and any slip-ups would end their hopes of winning the title. “Every team has an off-day and Dempo’s losses against Mahindra United and East Bengal should not allow us to be complacent. We will try to concentrate more on attack before keeping our fort intact,” stated Sukhwinder Singh.

First published on: 30-01-2008 at 11:43:57 pm
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