Panaji: With the non availability of
floodlights at the Nehru Stadium at Margao, Dempo would shift
all their home ties of the AFC Cup to Pune.
The Asian Football Confederation(AFC) has made it
compulsory that clubs playing even in their group stages of
AFC Cup should host matches under floodlights.
The Goa government had promised that floodlights would be
installed at the Nehru Stadium, Fatorda, but things have not
materialised and Dempo once again have to play their home ties
away from Goa, team sources said.
India`s champion club Dempo will play their first match
of the AFC Cup 2011 against Yemen`s Al Tilal on March 1 at
Shiv Chhatrapati Stadium Balewadi, Pune under floodlights.
The goans fans will be deprived to see international
matches for the second time.
In 2008 Dempo played their knock-out matches in Hyderabad
during the AFC Cup.
They made history then by becoming the first Indian club
to make it to the semi-finals of the 2008 AFC Cup
The Dempo team which returned early Monday morning after
a good performance against Qatar`s Al Sadd in the AFC
Champions league play-off, despite their 0-2 loss, will now be
shifting focus on excelling in the AFC Cup.
Dempo has been the flag bearer of Indian Football at the
AFC events over the past four to five years having twice
played in the play-off of the AFC championships League in 2009
against Sharjah FC and now against Al Sadd in Doha-Qatar,
their rich experience will help them to do well in the AFC
Following is Dempo`s AFC Cup fixtures: March 1- Dempo
v/s Al Tilal(Yemen)-Pune, March 15- Al Ansar(LIB) v/s - Dempo
Lebanon, April 12- Dempo v/s Nasaf(UZB)-Pune, April 27-
Nasaf(UZB) v/s Dempo -Uzbekistan, May 4- Al Tilal(Yem) v/s
Dempo- Yemen, May 11- Dempo v/s Al Ansar(LIB)-Pune.