There have been a lot of controversies surrounding the 130th Durand Cup, especially regarding the ground facilities. It has been raining heavily for the last few weeks in different parts of West Bengal and some grounds have been tough to play on than others.
Kerala Blasters raised the concern first and now FC Goa echoed the same thing. The Gaurs won their group and progressed to the knockout rounds but now there are chances of them forfeiting their fixture due to poor ground facilities.
Ahead of the game, head coach Juan Ferrando and Director of Football Ravi Puskar shared their viewpoints. Puskar started the proceedings by saying, “We are extremely concerned about the condition of the match venue for tomorrow.
“Me and Juan (Ferrando) made a visit this morning to see the ground. And we’re pretty much aghast with the conditions that we found at the ground. The pitch is waterlogged and I don’t see how it’s possible for a match to happen there tomorrow. We pointed this out to the Organizing Committee of the Durand Cup and thankfully they’ve agreed that the match shouldn’t be played there.
“They’re trying to find an alternative venue. I do believe Kalyani and Salt Lake are the two other options. We’re waiting to hear back from them and see where the venue is. We are having a pre-match press conference, but I don’t know where we’re going to play the match,” he continued.
The FC Goa management did not have much trust in the ground conditions at the Kalyani Stadium. Puskar gave an example of how Ferrando was not very satisfied with the ground as he also adds that the distance to the Kalyani from Kolkata is not very ideal for them.
“Honestly, there’s not a lot of confidence when another coach who’s actually had an experience with the ground first, comes back and is not very complimentary of the situation. I don’t think it makes a lot of sense for us to be going to Kalyani. It’s not a stadium that’s exactly next door.
“I don’t think that’s ideal for us to be going at six in the morning to play a game at two o’clock in the afternoon. And have to go through a journey of two and a half, three hours to get to a game. So, to be honest, it’s not an option for us. We will have to consider our decision once we hear back from the organizers,” he asserted.
The Gaurs are up for a match against the resurgent Delhi FC side. The Yan Law coached team knocked Gokulam Kerala out in their last group game and are hopeful to deliver another top performance against an Indian Super League side if the match goes through.