Holders Sheikh Jamal Dhanmondi Club stumbled in their first match of the Bangladesh Premier League's (BPL) second phase courtesy a 2-0 defeat against Arambagh Krira Sangha at Bangabandhu National Stadium on Tuesday.
Defender Didarul Haque netted an own goal in the opening half to give Arambagh the lead before youngster Mohammad Abdullah doubled the margin in the second half to secure three vital points.
Prolific scorer in recent years, Haitian forward Wedson Anselme left the Dhanmondi club in the mid-transfer window while Nigerian striker Emeka Darlington couldn't play due to suspension. The absence of their two vital players was evident in their game. Two latest foreign recruits, Gambian defender Malick Mendy and Nigerian forward Mike Otojareri started for Sheikh Jamal for the first time.
Arambagh went ahead in the 41st minute. Midfielder Rabiul Hasan took a corner that Dhanmondi goalkeeper Sujan Hossain failed to fist away properly. Brazilian midfielder Thiago Tyson was close to chest down the ball that was mis-cleared by Didarul and went into his own net.
Abdullah stunned the premier league champions by doubling the lead 13 minutes into the second half with a calm finish after breaking into the right side of the penalty area. Abdullah almost scored another when he unleashed a curled free-kick from 25 yards that was finger-tipped to safety by the Dhanmondi custodian.
Sheikh Jamal's misery worsened in injury time when new signing Otojareri missed a penalty after Landing Darboe was fouled by Badshah Mia inside the danger zone.
Sheikh Jamal remained at fourth with 19 points from 12 matches while Arambagh are only a point behind at sixth.
Meanwhile in the other match of the day at the same venue, Uttar Baridhara stunned Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra once again with a massive 3-0 victory to kick off their campaign. The newly-promoted outfit also beat the same opponents in the first match of the league.
Uttar Baridhara's new recruit Brazilian forward Leonardo Lima made his debut by scoring a brace to help his new club earn their second consecutive win in the league.
Midfielder Sujan Biswas put Uttar Baridhara ahead in the 13th minute with a powerful grounder from inside the box after Khalekuzzaman Sabuj's cross was blocked by a Sheikh Russel defender.
Lima doubled the lead in the 61st minute with a solo effort. Snatching the ball from an opponent defender, the new Uttar Baridhara signing rounded off the advancing netminder before smashing home into an empty net. Lima netted his second to seal victory in the 85th minute from a penalty.
Sk Jamal 0 2 Arambagh
Didarul – OG, Abdullah 58
Sk Russel 0 3 Uttar Baridhara
Sujan 13, Lima 61, 85 - P