After a brief lull in form, defending champions Dempo Sports Club seemed to have rediscovered their marauding touch when they thrashed United Sikkim Football Club 7-0, in the previous round of the I-League, at Duler stadium, Mapusa.
The familiar home territory, after a few away trips, might have worked in favour of Dempo, who despite being currently placed third in the league ladder behind toppers Churchill and 2nd-placed East Bengal, are well and truly capable of bouncing back to occupy their favourite No 1 spot.
Sunday’s home game in the 18th round against ONGC presents Dempo with a perfect opportunity to garner full points and begin their upward march in their quest to retain the I-League crown for the 2012-13 season.
Yes, winning on Sunday will keep Dempo within striking distance of closing the gap with the top two teams with not much separating Churchill (37), East Bengal (33) and Dempo (33) in terms of points tally.
“The big win against Sikkim has definitely given us the confidence back and I am sure we are on track again,” said Dempo midfielder Godwin Franco as his team prepares for Sunday’s encounter against ONGC at Duler, Dempo’s second game of the I-League season at the new-look venue.
“We played a few games in between where things did not work out the way we had planned, resulting in loss of points. But these things happen in football and as a team we need to take it in our stride and move on,” Godwin told The Navhind Times, reflecting back on the previous performances of the team.
“Overall I think things have been great and with the 7-0 win over Sikkim the other day, I am sure the team has regained its winning momentum,” the Dempo midfielder said with assurance.
Asked to reflect back on his own performance this season so far for Dempo, Godwin said: “Personally, I have been playing the role of an assist. This is my third season with the club and so far I have had an extremely satisfying season considering the fact that I have been feeling at the top of my form and in the matches to come I am determined to give my best.
“All I dream of is Dempo rising back to the top and winning the I-League again this season. The competition has been tough and would remain the same over the next couple of months. But with the kind of camaraderie and unity that exists between the players I am sure things will fall in place,” Godwin asserted.
Godwin has scored the lone goal for Dempo against Mohun Bagan this season, but he isn’t losing sleep over the only goal against his name in the season so far. “My role is that of an assist. I am happy with my role and all that matters to me is a Dempo win at the end of the day,” Godwin reminded praising Dempo Club Chairman Mr Shrinivas Dempo for being the guiding force behind the team, primarily because of his overwhelming support and encouragement to the team.
“Playing for Dempo is great. This is like a family. The players, coach and the entire support staff gel just like members of a family. I have been enjoying my experience,” summed up Godwin who one day aspires to play for India. [NT]