FC Goa’s team AFC (Asian Football Confederation) failed to take their first Champions League campaign ahead of the group stage but the team’s young Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem emerged as the best goalkeeper in terms of defense.
Dheeraj, who performed brilliantly in the 2017 FIFA Under-17 World Cup in India, made 26 saves in five matches, the highest in the group stage of the West Zone of this league.
According to the AFC website, “Dheeraj Singh certainly succeeded in making a name for himself on his continental debut. With some memorable efforts, he won praise from the observers by defending 26 goals in just five matches of the tournament.”
Due to Covid-19, the matches of the five groups of the Western Region were held at one place instead of the home and the other team’s venue. Group E matches were played in Goa.
In Group E, apart from Goa, Iran had teams from Persepolis, Qatar’s Al Rayyan, and UAE’s Al Wahda. Eastern region matches will be held later.
In the list of most defending goalkeepers, Mohammed Al Owais of Al Ahli Saudi FC finished second with 24 goals while Ahmed Basil of Al Shorta finished third with 19 saves.
The coaches of the opposing teams also praised Dheeraj’s brilliant game. His performance helped FC Goa to draw twice with Al Ryan and once against Al Wadha. The Goa team finished third in Group E after Persepolis FC and Al Wadah with three points from three matches.
Goa hosted AFC Champions League Group E matches and the All India Football Federation (AIFF) hailed the Asian Football Confederation for organizing a successful tournament. Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium situated in Margao, Goa conducted all Group E matched.