11th December, Hyderabad: Sreenidi Deccan Football Club edged past Delhi Football Club 1-0 in a Matchweek 10 I-League clash here at the Deccan Arena stadium on Monday thanks to a second half own goal by Gagandeep Bali. The victory keeps the Deccan Warriors in second place in the points table having played 10 matches.
Head Coach Carlos Vaz Pinto handed a first start of the season to defender Sajid Dhot and brought David Castaneda and Lalromawia back into the line-up. But it was Delhi FC who started the brighter of the two sides, putting pressure on the Sreenidi Deccan FC defence with a high press. The visitors almost forced an own goal from this pressure as a seemingly harmless backpass went under goalkeeper Albino Gomes’ feet but the post saved the hosts. An injury to midfielder Mayakkannan meant the Deccan Warriors were forced into an early change, bringing in Arun Kumar.
Sreenidi Deccan started the second half with more control and got their reward in the 64th minute when winger Rilwan Hassan cut in from the left and shot at goal. Defender Gagandeep tried to block the shot but ended up heading it past his own goalkeeper to break the deadlock. From that point on, Delhi FC went on the attack and Sreenidi Deccan tried to finish them on the break. Albino came to Sreenidi Deccan’s rescue in the 86th minute as he dived low to his left to keep out a long range effort from Delhi FC attacker Aroldinho.
Delhi continued to press for an equaliser but Sreenidi Deccan held on for the win. The Deccan Warriors will face Gokulam Kerala on December 19 at the Deccan Arena in their last I-League game of the calendar year.