Margao, May 13 (UNI) A keen contest is on the cards as I-league Champions Dempo SC (India) lock horns with Sur Club of (Oman) in the crucial final group ''A'' tie of the AFC Football Cup, to be played at Nehru stadium Fatorda here tomorrow.
Dempo are trading their guns on winning the crucial duel to brighten their chances of qualifying for the quarter finals knock out. It will also be a revenge tie for the home team, who lost to Sur in the earlier match by 2-3.
Dempo coach Mauricio Afonso said, ''It is a crucial match for us and we need to garner full points.'' Dempo is presently placed third with seven points, one point behind table toppers Muharraq (Bahrain) and Al Ansar (Lebanon), both with eight points each. Dempo, out of the five outings had two wins, a draw and two losses and scored eight goals and conceded 10.
''We still have a chance to qualify for the quarterfinal as the second best team from the group, but all will depend on the outcome of our tomorrow's match,'' the coach added.
He said ''If one looks at our performance barring 0-4 loss to Al Muharraq, the rest have all been close finish as we started off with a win against Al Ansar, we need to win against Sur to boost our tally to 10 points. Dempo could possibly top the table with a win tomorrow, should another crucial match involving Muharraq and AL Ansar both tied on 8 points each ends in a draw.'' The Dempo coach said the players are in a confident frame of mind. ''The team is in a good shape and their performance in the AFC cup has been commendable,'' he said.
Meanwhile, Sur Club will play without Brazilian ace Jose Estefane, who is served a six match AFC Cup ban for spitting at an Al Muharraq player during their drawn match.
''We have to make the best of available resources. We will play our normal football and ensure that we do well in tomorrow's game,'' Oman's Sur Club, coach Ahmed El Akhdar said.
Dempo will be a tough opponent and Sur Club will bank on their two ivory coast foreigners Kamara and Travore to lend support to the team's cause.
UNI SRN RN AB NS1856