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27 June, 2019 00:00 00 AM
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Abahani reach AFC Cup knock out phase

SPORTS REPORTER, DHAKA
Abahani reach AFC Cup knock out phase
Bangladesh champions Abahani Limited players and officials pose for a photograph after qualifying the AFC Cup knock out phase beating Minarva Punjab 1-0 in Guwahati, India, yesterday. BFF Photo

Masih Saighani blasted a dying minute header to make the Abahani Limited mission success qualifying in the knock stage of the AFC Cup when they finished the preliminary round with a solitary goal victory over the hosts Minarva Punjab of India in Guwahati yesterday. Held at the Indira Ghandi Stdium, Guwahati the Bangladesh champions Abahani Limited grabbed the deserving win in the crucial away match.

Abahani earned 13 points from 6 matches with four wins one draw and suffered a defeat.

Abahani won their both home and away against Manag Marshyangdi of Nepal by 1-0 and 5-0, defeated Chennaiyin FC in home and suffered defeat in away bu 1-0 against them when drew with Minarva Punjab by 2-2 in home ground defeated in away by 1-0.

Abahani, who went Guwahati with the assignment to win the last match against Minarva Punjab to confirm their place in the next stage of the AFC Cup, made the target fulfill with defeating the hosts.

Abahani Limited, after a frustrating 2-2 draw in home match against Minarva Punjab in Dhaka, turned into must win situation against them and succeeded with demonstrating maximum control throughout 90 minutes game.

Though Sky Blue from Dhaka frustrated for a long 90 minutes time with giving series of missing trial failing to convert some easy opportunities but broke the deadlock just a second last minute of six minutes stoppage time.

However, the match was kicked off with Abahani took the control of the match vey soon and could have taken clear lead in the opening 45 sessions in accordance with the flow of the match, but due to forwards poor finishing they had to struggled for a long.

Abahani opened their first chance to take lead on 10th minute but a Belfort attempt from the edge of the six yards went straight to goalkeeper.

The Minarva keeper again rescued the hosts with his last moment effort when Nabib Newaz Jibon’s right footer on Sohel Rana cross was about to enter the bottom right corner of the far post on half an hour mark of the game.

Abahani however, had another chance with Mamunul racing through the midway and his left footer from inside the box on Belfort back pass only to see his curled shot narrowly missed the cross piece on 37th minute following an effort of Sohel Rana again went to straight to goalkeeper two minute before.

The pace dropped a bit after the break, but Abahani continuing their control and went closer again on 68th minute with Afghan defender Masih Saighani’s left-footed shot on Jibon cross from outside the box was saved by goalie in the bottom right corner of the post.

Abahani only mustered half chances until the match went to injury time, when Jibon’s rising goalbound shot was saved by Minarva goalkeeper with a full-stretch dive to deny Abahani lead on 79th minute. When the match was heading to a goalless draw, the Bangladesh champions’ victory ensured with the tall Afghan defender Masih Saighani perfected his header when the ball came to his way after Belfort took a header on Jibon’s corner kick (1-0).

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Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

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