Maratha Warriors clinched the League De Champions 2020, as they edged past Shree Rudreshwar Strikers by a solitary goal in the inaugural football league, organised by Football Association of Sankhalim at Cudnem Football Ground on Sunday.
Aswin Sawal scored the only goal of the match in the 16th minutes to help the Virdi side to become the first champions.
Ashwin was adjudged as the star of the league for a heroic performance in the entire league, while Lavu Gawas from Sunrisers FC won the Golden Boot for the highest goals.
Lokesh Gawande (Rudreshwar Strikers), Shablo Ghadi (Maratha Warriors) and Bhupesh Kamat (Rudreshwar Strikers) were awarded Best Goalkeeper, Best Defender and Best Midfielder trophies respectively. Rudreshwar Strikers were also adjudged as the best disciplined team of the league.
The champions had defeated Sunrisers FC by a 2-1 margin in the first semi-final, while keeper Lokesh pulled off two brilliant saves in the tiebreaker against Sirsat Challengers to put Rudreshwar Strikers in the semi-finals.
Fourteen teams from nine different local leagues, namely, STP Super League, United Karapur Football League, Parye Football League, Housing Board Super League, Virdi Football League, Kudne Super League, Navelim Premier League, Maina Super League and Amona Super League, had participated in the Champions League.
The league was played in two phases where nine champions of their local leagues were given direct entry into the group stage, while five runners-up played in the qualifiers to book three slots in the main event.