Margao: Salgaocar exploited Al Arouba`s weak defence to score a resounding 3-1 win and script their first win in their penultimate round of the group `D` league match of the AFC Cup at Nehru Stadium, Fatorda, here today.
Salgaocar, who led 1-0 at half time, scored through Francis Fernandes (injury time of the first half), Milagres Gonsalves (49th) and Beevan D`Mello (63rd).
Danilo Teixeira reduced the margin for Al Arouba in the 81st minute from a penalty after defender Augustin brought down substitute Juma Al-Maashari from behind.
Salgaocar, who today scored their first win, took their tally to four points from five matches. Al Arouba, who are out of contention for the pre-quarterfinals stage, remained on four points from five matches.
Salgaocar looked depleted in the absence of their several key players but put up a solid performance against the visitors whose defence was in shambles especially in the second half as the home team came with repeated forays and score two more goals to end the rivals` challenge. The visitors who had an outside chance to make it to the next stage showed lot of promise initially as Denilo?Teixeira and Al-Wahaibi took shot in turns but failed to find the target and their weak defence succumbed to the home team pressure especially in the second half.
Although they came with few raids and had couple of chances but their strikers failed to find the target.
Salgaocar, who are out of contention for the pre-quarterfinals stage, took time to settle down but once they found their grooves put pressure on the rival defence.
In the absence of striker Edeh Chidi and Ryuji Sueoka, Salgaocar lacked sharpness upfront until they took the lead in the stoppage time of the first half.
Beevan D`Mello, who missed a chance to score earlier, laid a cross from the left into the box for unmarked Francis Fernandes who shot home from close.
Changing over, Salgaocar increased the lead in the 49th minute when defender Nicolau Colaco sent a high cross into the box from the right for Milagres Gonsalves who headed into the back of the net.
Beevan D`Mello then sealed the fate of the visitors who after a pass from Milagares inside the box positioned himself and placed the ball past helpless keeper to his left into the net in the 63rd minute.
The visitors who came close to scoring a couple of times reduced the margin in the 81st minute when Denilo Teixeira scored from a penalty after defender Augustin brought down substitute Juma Al-Maashari inside the box.
I have a lot of respect and admiration for what Juventus have achieved over the last few years.