Vasco: Goa will face Meghalaya in the lung opener of a Group A league match of the 71st Santosh Trophy at the SAG Athletics Stadium here on Sunday.
The tournament is making a return to Goa after a gap of 21 years.
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"Now that we have the advantage of playing at home, we will try to bring back the championship after a gap of seven years. There is also pressure on the other side to do well in front of the home crowd, I have asked the boys not to take the pressure but play their natural game," stated coach Mateus Costa.
"Some of the players have the experience of playing in the I-League. Among youngsters some of them are playing for the first time in this tournament and they are eager to show their skill and make an impact. Meghalaya have made progress in football and it is going to be a tough contest and if my boys stick to the strategy and game plan I am confident we will emerge victors," added Costa.
Holders Services, West Bengal and Chandigarh are the other teams in Group A.
Group B consists of Railways, Punjab, Mizoram and Maharashtra.
The top two teams from each group will qualify for the semifinals.