AFC Champions League Highlights: Torabi, Hosseini goals help Persepolis beat FC Goa 2-1

After two stunning draws in its first two matches, FC Goa will face its biggest test yet, when it takes on Iranian side and last year's runners-up Persepolis on Tuesday.

Edu Bedia celebrates after scoring FC Goa's first goal on Tuesday-FC GOA MEDIA

Welcome to highlights of the 2020-21 AFC Champions League Group E fixture between FC Goa and Persepolis at the Fatorda Stadium.

A first defeat for FC Goa in the Group Stage as Persepolis claims its third straight win in Group E. Goa had its moments, but a dull second half, where it could not create sufficient clear cut chances meant that it could not find the goals, which could have helped it salvage something from the game.

Another opportunity presents itself with for FC Goa on Friday against the same opposition and hopefully, a different result comes in it.  Till then, it is goodbye and stay safe.

FULL TIME: Persepolis 2-1 FC Goa

4 minutes of stoppage time. Is there one last twist left in this match?

89' Omid runs down the left flank, but a challenge by Gonzalez puts te ball out of play.

87' A good passage of play as both teams exchange possession, but again Goa unable to conclusively create anything.

82' Redeem Tlang takes a shot from the left, but the ball lands in the hands of the goalkeeper.

Free kick for Goa as Mortiz is brought down by Pahlavan

81' Goa unable to get anything fruitful here as Persepolis is dominating possession.

CHANGE for Persepolis: Alekasir is off and Mehdi is on

Into the final 15 minutes of regulation time of this match.

74' This half has oscillated finely between intense and dull, But Goa has not a single chance on goal, which is a concern.

70' Persepolis puts more pressure on Goa, as Siamek takes a shot, but no harm done.

69' Persepolis find space amidst a crowd of Goa players as Amid fires in a low shot on the bottom right corner, which is saved by Dheeraj.

66' Edu Bedia is coming off the pitch owing to injury. Seriton will lead Goa for the rest of the game and he is replaced by Redeem Tlang in the middle.

Goa skipper Edu Bedia is down after a clash with one of the Persepolis players. He is back on his feet after treatment.

62' Persopolis tries to create something from the right but Gonzalez is alert and puts in the challenge to put the ball out of play.

61' Into the final 30 minutes of this match, whose intensity has fallen a bit. Goa has a lot of attackers on the pitch, capable of getting the equaliser.

Twin changes for Persopolis and and one for Goa:

Persapolis: Shahriar and Ahmed are replaced by Alishah and Sarlak

Goa: Pandita in for Martins

54' Torabi delivers the corner, but Dheeraj is alert enough to collect the ball.

51' Glan Martins and Siamek are involved in an altercation, but neither is booked.Play moves on.

A slow passage of play following the offside.

47' OFFSIDE. A fast attack by Persapolis results in Alkasir slamming the ball into the back of the net, but the flag is raised.

46' CORNER for Persapolis. The delivery comes in and twin headers by Torabi and Shahriar is not strong enough as the ball is collected by Dheeraj.

GOA has made another change: Saviour Gama is off and Devendra Murgaonkar has come on.

WELCOME BACK!

Also, FC Goa manager Juan Ferrando spoke to Sportstar exclusively earlier:

Before the second half starts, read more about Edu Bedia here:

Difficult to like, impossible to break: Edu Bedia's FC Goa marathon with fractured ribs

A terrific half of football, which saw a moment of history, when Edu Bedia gave the lead in the game. But Persapolis assumed control after by scoring twice and putting Goa under pressure.  Goa has played well, but perhaps has lacked a bit of precision at the final third.

It promises to be an intriguing second-half. Stay tuned.

HALF-TIME: Persopolis 2-1 FC Goa

2 minutes of added time.

SAVED!!!! Dheeraj saves a thunderous shot with his left hand from Kannani, who goes slightly central.  There is life in this match still for Goa.

PENALTY FOR Persapolis .

39' Shahriar get a ball onto his right foot, but is unable to make the most of the opportunity.

38' CHANCE FOR Persapolis as Amiri is delivered a lovely ball in from the left wing, but Dheeraj is quick to come in and save the ball from going in.

Under 10 minutes of regulation time left in the half.

36' Amiri brings Ortiz down to give Goa a free kick. Brandon puts in a slightly deeper ball, which results in a goal kick.

 

32' FREE KICK for Goa as Ortiz is brought down by a challenge from Kamal. Bedia has another chance, but it is wide.

30' Torabi goes for from a long range, but the ball is nowhere near and flies into orbit.

29' CHANGE FOR GOA: Amarjit Singh replaces Adil Khan.

24' GOALLLLL Persapolis takes the lead. Captain Jalal Hosseini heads the ball in, from a Torabi cross, to put his side 2-1 in front.

23' Another Free kick for Persapolis. Torabi goes for goal, but Dheeraj parries the ball to give the Iranians a corner.

20' Amiri sprints down the wing, fires in a low shot but Dheeraj is there to collect the ball. Goa needs to be careful to not let Persepolis get away.

18' GOAL!!!! Torabi makes it 1-1 with a fine penalty.

17' Penalty for Perspolis. Alkasir is brought down inside the box.

15' Goa is playing some super football. Bedia sprints in through the middle, passes the ball to Brandon, who fires in a shot and it takes a super save from Hamid to prevent his side from going 2-0 down.

History has been created, ladies and gentleman as an Indian team has scored in an AFC Champions League game.

Edu Bedia scores FC Goa's first AFC Champions League goal

14' GOAL!!!!!! EDU BEDIA SCORES FOR GOA FROM A BRANDON FERNANDES FREE KICK.

11' Ortiz sprints down the right flank, but is pushed down and

9' Seriton is booked for a challenge on Shahriar and it is a free kick for Persepolis from a dangerous position. Ahmed Nouraillahi takes a low set-piece and ball goes straight into Dheeraj's hands.

7' FREE KICK for Goa as Glan Martins is brought down. Nothing consequential comes from it.

7' Goa needs to get a bit more of the ball here. Persepolis is keeping the ball with minimal threat.

4' Persepolis with more of the possession in the opening few minutes. It is trying to break the tight Goan defence, but is lacking a bit precision.

 

3' OFFSIDE! Shahriar is caught off-side from a lovely ball in. Persepolis putting early pressure on Goa.

1' Goa with more of the possession in the nascent stages of this match.

HERE WE GO! Persepolis kicks things off

The players are walking out to the middle. Goa in its black kit, Persepolis in its red kit.

Al Wahda's win over Al Rayyan means Goa goes into this fixture, third in the table.

10:15pm: 15 MINUTES TO GO FOR KICK-OFF!

“Nothing more than maybe arguably the toughest test of my career. They come with a reputation which is earned and now it is our turn to grow further and earn a reputation of our own. I am really looking forward to the game. We are going to enjoy the moment for now but we have to mentally put the results behind and prepare for Persepolis.”

-FC Goa midfielder Glan Martins speaking ahead of this fixture.

“I saw both their matches, and they have been really working (hard), and been running a lot. It’s (FC Goa’s position on the table) not only surprising for us, but also for everyone else in the ACL. From the mental aspect, they are on a real high, and they have been doing well on the technical aspect as well. It is not by accident that they stopped two good teams. They did it on merit,”

-The Persepolis manager Yahya Golmohammadi had good things to say about FC Goa, ahead of tonight’s fixture.

FC Goa will want to keep Shahriar Moghanlou quiet tonight and it does look like his threat has forced it to bulk its defence.

In its last match, trailing 0-1 down at half-time, Moghanlou struck twice to help Persepolis win the game 3-1.

There is no Ishan Pandita for Goa and it looks like Jorge Ortiz will start as the lone striker up-front. Juan Ferrando has opted to boost his defence, by including Adil Khan and Saviour Gama in the XI.

One change for Persepolis from the last match with Issa Alkasir coming in for Omid Ali Shah.

Here are the line-up:

FC Goa: Dheeraj Singh (GK); Seriton Fernandes, Ivan Gonzalez, James Donachie, Sanson Pereira, Adil Khan, Saviour Gama; Edu Bedia ©; Brandon Fernandes, Glan Martins; Jorge Ortiz.

Manager: Juan Ferrando

Persepolis: Hamad Lak; Siamek Nemati, Hossein Kanaani, Jalal Hosseini(C) Vahid Amiri; Kamal Kamyabinia, Ahmad Nouraillahi, Ehsan Pahlevan, Mahdi Torabi; Issa Alkasir, Shahriar Moghanlou,

Manager: Yahya Golmohammadi

Preview

Emboldened by two highly encouraging results in a span of four days, FC Goa will be up for the challenge when it runs into table-topper and last season’s runner-up Persepolis FC in the AFC Champions League here on Tuesday.

The first Indian outfit to play in the continent’s top-tier club competition, FC Goa surpassed expectations when it held AL-Rayyan and Al Wahda to goalless draws in its first two outings of the prestigious league.

Iranian champion Persepolis FC will be a different ball game altogether but judging by its spirited performances in the last one week, the Indian club doesn’t look like a team that will get intimated by reputation.

FC Goa will certainly enter the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium with the belief that it can go for not just another stalemate but also a win, regardless of the opponents’ strengths and past records.

Head coach Juan Ferrando was full of praise for goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh whose heroics against United Arab Emirates’ Al Wahda earned FC Goa a 0–0 stalemate in its last Group E match.

The 20-year-old, who guarded the Indian citadel during the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, stole the show with a string of fine saves which forced Ferrando into giving his goalkeeper the moniker ‘Superman’.

One of Goa’s most influential players so far in the elite tournament, Dheeraj has made a total of nine saves after two matches played and six of those came against Al Wahda.

“I feel like he is the best goalkeeper on matchday two,” said Ferrando after his side held Al Wahda.

“Dheeraj’s saves were very good. One thing for sure is that he needs to improve on his passing game because we know our style is to build up.” Ferrando said.

 Dheeraj, who moved to Goa FC in January this year, is “extremely hardworking” and hard work is one of the few things Goa will need in abundance against a quality opposition like Persepolis FC.

While they have been exceptional in defence, FC Goa’s strength lies in the approach adopted by coach Ferrando, including maintaining ball possession and covering ground.

Currently second in the group behind Persepolis which has won both its games against Al Wahda (1–0) and Al-Rayyan (3–1), Goa knows it will face its ultimate test against the Iranian champion.

The 2019 runner-up defeated UAE’s Al Wahda 1–0 on Wednesday. Judging by its current form, Yahya Golmohammadi’s charges have certainly put behind last season’s final defeat against Korea Republic’s Ulsan Hyundai FC.

Persepolis has not lost in its last five matches in all competitions, with its only blemish being a 1–1 draw against Shahr Khodro in the Iran Pro League in April.

Seyed Jalal Hosseini has been a rock for Persepolis, with the veteran defender scoring a rare goal in the win over Al Wahda and the Iranian giant would definitely like to think that it has its nose ahead against FC Goa.

Least surprised by his team’s performances in the first two matches, FC Goa coach Ferrando hopes his wards can produce something similar against the group leader.

“It’s not surprising because I know my squad wants to improve every day. It’s a pleasure for me to work with this coaching staff, these players.

“We have to control our emotions. It’s necessary to repeat some details and change the plan for Persepolis. We have to continue in the same way because it’s a very difficult competition,” Ferrando said.

Only the group winners are assured of advancing to the next stage of the league.

Match starts at 10.30 PM IST.

Persepolis-an overview

After two successive draws against Al Wahda and Al Rayyan, FC Goa will face arguably its toughest challenge yet, when it faces Iranian side Persepolis in the third match in Group E of the AFC Champions League on Tuesday.

Founded in 1963, the club has a rich history of silverware, having won 13 league titles, the latest of which came in the 2019–20 season, 6 Hazfi Cup titles. 3 Iranian Super Cup titles and 1 Espandi Cup crown. 

At the AFC Champions League, Persepolis finished twice runners-up- in 2018 and 2020. 

The Yahya Golmohammadi-coached team is currently on top of the standings in the domestic league, with 41 points in 20 games. 

It also tops Group E, with six points in two matches.

Squad: Goalkeepers: Amirmohammad Yousefi, Bozidar Radosevic, Hamad Lak.

Defenders: Hossein Kanaani, Farshad Faraji, Jalal Hosseini ©, (CBs); Saeid Aghaei, Ali Shojaei (LBs); Siamek Nemati, Mehdi Shiri (RBs), 

Midfielders: Milad Sarlak, Kamal Kamyabinia(DMs); Ahmad Nouraillahi, Mohammad Sharifi (CMs),

Forwards: Mehadi Torabi, Omid Alishah, Ehsan Pahlevan, Vahid Amiri (LFs); Mehdi Mehdikhani (RFs); Mehdi Abdi Qara, Issa Alkasir, Shahriar Moghanlou, Alireza Khodaei (CFs). 

Key players: Jalal Hosseini, Ahmad Nourollahi, Shahriar Moghanlou,

Coach: Yahya Golmohammadi

FC Goa’s full squad for the AFC Champions League

Goalkeepers: Mohammad Nawaz, Naveen Kumar, Shubham Dhas, Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem

Defenders: Sanson Pereira, Seriton Fernandes, Leander D’Cunha, Ivan Gonzalez (Spain), Mohamed Ali, James Donachie (Australia), Aibanbha Dohling, Saviour Gama, Adil Khan

Midfielders: Edu Bedia (Spain), Glan Martins, Princeton Rebello, Brandon Fernandes, Phrangki Buam, Redeem Tlang, Makan Winkle Chothe, Alexander Romario Jesuraj, Amarjit Singh Kiyam, Romeo Fernandes

Forwards: Jorge Ortiz , Devendra Murgaonkar, Ishan Pandita.

Coach: Juan Ferrando

Where can you watch the match?

The match will be broadcast on the Star Network. Watch Persepolis vs FC Goa on Star Sports 3. The match will also be live-streamed on Disney+Hotstar VIP and Jio TV.