It was a dramatic derby match at the KG5 Mini-Stadium in Banjul, as Dingareh FC clinched the Super Cup following a 4-0 win against their arch rivals Lancaster United on Sunday.
Watched by hundreds of spectators, Eliman Secka scored after just eight minutes before Lamarana Jallow added a second on the half-hour mark. Pa Musa Tarawally’s 59th minute effort and a Muhammed Bah finish ten minutes later sealed the comprehensive win.
The win avenged Dingareh’s defeat to the same opposition in the Knockout Cup competion last year and the two sides will be among the favourite teams coming into this season.
As winners, Dingareh were awarded a giant trophy and would later be given a cash prize of D10, 000, while Lancaster United is equally expected to pocket home a consolation prize for D5, 000. This is because no cash was given to the teams at the end of the game but the committee said it would later award the prizes.
Speaking to Observer sports in a post-match interview, Malamin Singhateh, head coach of Dingareh FC, pointed out that despite losing 12 key players in the last moments leading to the game, he managed to prepare his boys fully with a winning spirit, adding that they could not let history repeat itself.
“My team has much more physical fitness because we had trained during the Holy month of Ramadan when our counterparts were resting,” he stated, adding that his team is one of the youngest in this season’s tournament.
The head coach of Lancaster United, Alhagie Omar Sarr admitted that it was a great shock, and considered it as revenge.
He said their opponent had capitalised on their mistakes and in the process killed the morals of his boys.
“My team is very weak because we didn’t have enough training due to the tight schedule put up by the committee. We all know how Gambian Nawettan is: we don’t pay our players; so it’s hard to force them to train in Ramadan. It has become a tradition for Lancaster to lose our first game, so there is problem,” he added.
Ndongo Camara, the second vice president of the Banjul Sports Committee, said they used the Super Cup match to identify loopholes and prepare for the upcoming Nawettan season.
According to him, the committee has secured a three-year sponsorship deal with their partners for the development of football in Banjul.
He expressed delight that the zone is always violence-free thanks to tight and efficient security.
He finally assured all teams a very successful and peaceful Nawettan, while urging everyone to come out and support the committee in the development of sports in the city.
by Saffiatou Colley