Sports, Health & Lifestyle
Written By: Mohammed al-Kibsi
Article Date: May 4, 2011 - 10:16:23 PM
Dempo's and al-Tilal’s dreams of making it to the knockout stages of the AFC Cup ended on Wednesday after Dempo allowed Yemen's Al Tilal to come from behind and hold them to a 2-2 draw in the Group A league match at the Nehru stadium in Gola India.
The draw takes both Dempo and Al Tilal to four points each. However, Al Tilal, who have a better goal difference are placed third while Dempo is at the bottom of the group. Al Nasaf, who are leading the table with 12 points, have made it to the round of 16. Al Ansar is second with six points and is most likely to be the second team to qualify from this group after Wednesday’s draw. In a must win situation for both teams, Dempo who held territorial advantage, controlled the midfield throughout the game and were more resourceful in the attack.
Al Tilal’s players were clearly affected by the heat and Dempo took the lead twice and had plenty of chances to claim the points.
Dempo, who played with slow pace and moved around with short passes followed by overhead passes, had best chance to go ahead in the 23rd minute when a move between Roberto Silva and Ranty Martins saw the latter shooting straight at the keeper who collected the ball.
Dempo slackened the pace and fell back allowing the visitors to dictate terms who came with couple of dangerous moves and restored parity in the 40th minute. Hussein Ahmed Hussein Al-Ghazi initiated the move on the top of the box as he relayed the ball to Lamitana Geleta who split the defence with a through pass back to Hussein Ahmed.Hussein Al-Ghazi beat rival keeper Laximikanth Kattimani with a low shot to have both the team 1-1 at half time.
A minute into the second-half, Nigerian striker and captain Ranti Martins put Dempo ahead again but substitute Sami Karama snatched the equaliser in the 84th minute.
The draw left both teams with four points each and their fate hanging in the balance. Nasaf lead the group with 12 points while Lebanon’s Al Ansar are placed second with six points. The teams play each other later on Wednesday.
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