By Kaustav Bera
Goal in its end of season special analyses the performance of all the teams in India's top flight and in this piece, we focus on Salgaocar.
Expectation : Salgaocar had a tumultous season last season when Karim Bencherifa quit after a couple of games with David Booth being handed over the mantle. When Booth came in, Salgaocar were eerily close to the drop and he did little to displace the doubts as the season ended in lowly seventh for the champions in the 2010-11 iteration. Salgaocar roped in the experienced Derrick Pereira and was asked to bring in the players he wanted in order to help re-build the club. They were expected to finish in the top half of the table.
Result: At one moment of time it was Salgaocar who looked to be running away from the title and they did spend six
|STAT OF THE SEASON
In spite of finishing 3rd, Salgaocar
were second from bottom at having
utilized their U-23 contingent.
The signing of Dudu Omagebami helped them once again stake a claim for the title but in the end, they could only finish third.
The Coach : Derrick Pereira was a pillar of consistency during his four year long tenure of Pune FC. Although Pune FC had never won the league, the relatively new club had challenged the established contenders at every step leading to their strongest ever finish last season of being runners up.
Given a free reign at Salgaocar, it seems Derrick Pereira is on the right track to build a winning team in Goa. If not for the blip in mid season, they could have been even better placed on the table and Pereira could have returned to winning ways after having lost won a trophy in his previous stint with Mahindra United.
Where it went wrong: The lack of support for frontman Daryl Duffy seemed to have cost the Goan giants. Claude Gnakpa who was supposed to be the second striker in the squad failed to score and the decision to sign his replacement was delayed until after the Federation Cup. This led to a barren streak of about eight games which wreaked havoc with their chances of winning the I-League. Lack of squad depth was evident as Pereira often fielded the same starting eleven even when they had to play two matches within a space of two days in the business end of the season.
|Top 3 Performances
1. East Bengal 2-3 Salgaocar FC
2. Dempo 0-2 Salgaocar FC
3. Pune FC 1-2 Salgaocar FC
|Top Player of the Season
|Flop Player of the Season
“We have to be focused throughout the match than to go off for a minute or a second also. So I tell my players to stay focused for 90 plus minutes."
- Derrick Pereira