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AFC Cup: Dempo down Al Faisaly

March 18, 2009 22:33 IST

Their three-goal lead did not seem enough but Dempo survived an Al Faisaly onslaught for an impressive 4-3 victory in the AFC Cup football tournament at the Amman International Stadium.

Clifford Miranda, Anthony Pereira and Ranti Martins put the visitors three-up by breather but the second half was completely dominated by their opponents.

For Al Faisaly, Moayad Salim pulled a goal back but Climax Lawrence then netted a fourth goal for Dempo before an own goal and a Moayad Abukeshek strike helped the Jordanians reduce the margin.

Dempo took the lead in the 22nd minute when Miranda produced a first-time finish from Ranti's cross.

The Indians doubled their advantage four minutes later when Pereira was first to a ball inside the Al Faisaly area and scored with a powerful shot beyond goalkeeper Mohammad Halawa.

They established a 3-0 lead on the stroke of half-time when Nigerian striker Ranti's fierce effort first hit the bar and then Halawa on the head on its way in.

Al Faisaly made two changes during the interval and it paid dividends as substitute Salim rifled home from the edge of the area.

Salim almost claimed both his and Al Faisaly's second goal shortly after the hour mark as he hit the woodwork and Abukeshek put the rebound wide. 

But Al Faisaly conceded a fourth goal when a Lawrence run ended with him beating substitute goalkeeper Zapen Al Khawaldeh with a low shot.

The Jordanians reduced the deficit in the 71st minute when Abukeshek's cross was put into his own net by Dempo defender Rebello.

Al Faisaly continued to press and they scored a third goal two minutes later when Abukeshek applied the finish from close range to Abdelhadi Maharmeh's cross.

Dempo coach Armando Colaco was delighted with the effort by his wards in their surprise win. 

"I'm really happy with this win because we played a big game," said Colaco.

"We came to Jordan with a healthy respect for Al Faisaly as they have previously won the title twice and we didn't know a lot about them. 

"We played with a defensive formation and took advantage of our counter attacks and scored three goals. After we scored the fourth goal we were under big pressure and conceded two goals but held on for the win," he said.

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