Salgaocar FC, who survived relegation in the I-League, would look give a good account of themselves when they clash against Mohun Bagan in their opening match of the Federation Cup football tournament at Tilak Stadium here tomorrow.
Mohun Bagan beat Salgaocar twice in the I-League but the home side would be looking for a change of fortunes in the Federation Cup.
“It’s a fresh start for us. The I-League campaign was very disappointing as we were desperate to finish a lot higher up the league than what we eventually did. So the Federation Cup is a new opportunity to do well and try and win a trophy,” Salgaocar striker Darryl said during the official pre-match press-conference at Tilak Stadium.
Mohun Bagan too were disappointed for not winning the I-League title and would look to made amends by winning the Federation Cup.
Asked if the Kolkata giants were motivated going into the Federation Cup, coach Sanjoy Sen said they were focussed on finishing the season with a trophy.
“Definitely. We want to win a Trophy. Whatever is gone has gone and is past now. So our focus is to win this Cup. When we started the season after becoming Champions (last edition of I-League), expectations in Kolkata were just too high. So at least for our supporters we should try our level best,” Sen maintained.
Mohun Bagan and India striker Jeje Lalpekhlua also echoed the same sentiment.
“We are disappointed to lose the I-League trophy and this is our new target to get the Federation Cup for the fans and for the team,” Jeje said about the task at hand.
As for Salgaocar FC, the Vasco-based club will see a third coach at the helm for the season with assistant coach Mario Soares taking charge for the competition after Santosh Kashyap and the Greens parted ways after the I-League campaign.
Despite a monumental task to start his coaching assignment, Soares is upbeat and confident to get the better of Mohun Bagan against whom his side lost both the matches in the I-League.
“We are positive and we will do our best. The boys are high on tempo. Mohun Bagan are a big side but we need to cash in on the home advantage,” Soares, who has been the Greens assistant coach for five years, said.
Salgaocar last won the Cup in 2011 while Bagan lifted the Trophy in 2010.