FC Goa suffer second consecutive loss against Persepolis FC
Hero Indian Super League (Hero ISL) outfit FC Goa suffered a 4-0 loss against Iranian champions Persepolis FC in their AFC Champions League clash at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in Fatorda on Friday night. Two goals in either half secured a fourth straight win in Group E (West Region) for the Red Army as they consolidated their position at the top of the group. FC Goa made eight changes to their starting line-up.
- Shahriyar Moghanlou scored the opener in the 24th minute before Mehdi Torabi doubled Persepolis FC’s lead from the spot in the 43rd minute.
- Issa Alekasir scored his side’s third goal of the night in the 47th minute before Kamal Kamyabinia made it 4-0 in the 58th minute.
Persepolis FC dominated the proceedings in the early stages of the match but failed to create any clear-cut opportunities. Shahriyar Moghanlou came close in the 20th minute but his header from an Omid Alishah cross went just over the crossbar.
Moghanlou eventually broke the deadlock for the Red Army in the 24th minute. The forward collected a brilliant ball from Mehdi Torabi and put his side ahead swiftly with Naveen Kumar grimacing in goal for the Gaurs. Yahya Golmohammadi’s men doubled their lead in the 43rd minute, this time from a penalty. Naveen fouled Issa Alekasir and Torabi was spotless in making it 2-0 as both teams headed into the break shortly after.
Alekasir furthered his side’s advantage two minutes into the second half with a pinpoint finish. Moghanlou passed the ball to the forward with a deft touch and Alekasir’s shot found the bottom corner of the net.
Persepolis FC continued to push the FC Goa players back and didn’t take too long to score their fourth goal -- in the 58th minute. The Gaurs were unable to clear their lines from a corner and substitute Kamal Kamyabinia did well to poke the ball into the net.
Naveen then made a crucial save in the 70th minute to deny Mehdi Abdi. Shortly after in the 73rd minute, Mehdi Mehdikhani’s header from a Mohammad Sharifi cross hit the post.
Chances were few and far between for the Gaurs as they looked to reduce the deficit but failed to find the back of the net. Substitute Jorge Ortiz attempted a shot on target in injury time, but goalkeeper Bozidar Radosevic made an important save to secure a shut-out for his team.
This was the Red Army’s fourth successive win and they are now in a very strong position in terms of qualifying for the next round. FC Goa meanwhile face a tough task but they are still in the fray. They play Al Rayyan SC next on April 26. The Qatari club lost to Al Wahda of the UAE 1-0 earlier in the day.