Holder Dhaka Abahani Limited dropped points once again in the Bangladesh Premier League as they were held to a goalless draw by Rahmatganj Muslim Friends Society at Bangabandhu National Stadium on Friday.
Meanwhile in the day’s other match, leader Chittagong Abahani Limited also dropped points, for the first time in the league this season as they played out a stalemate against a spirited Arambagh Krira Sangha at the same venue.
It was Abahani’s second draw out of six matches so far this season.
Following the draw, the Sky Blues remained fourth with 11 points while Rahmatganj also maintained their previous position of fifth with eight points from the same number of outings.
Abahani, who beat Kamal Babu’s Old Dhaka outfit twice in the league last season, have been inconsistent in the league.
They managed to beat strong clubs like Sheikh Russel Krira Chakra, Mohammedan Sporting Club, Saif Sporting Club, but failed to earn full points against weaker sides like Farashganj Sporting Club and Team BJMC.
The Sky Blues dominated the game, kept possession but the misfiring forward line denied them from finding the back of the net.
Gambian midfielder Landing Darboe started ahead of Nigerian forward Emeka Darlington but failed to make little impact in the game while national striker Nabib Newaj Jibon missed some big chances.
At the half-hour mark, Rahmatganj midfielder Mohammad Sohel delivered a precise cross for defender Monday Osagie inside the box but the Nigerian failed to connect from a yard’s distance inside the six-yard box.
Abahani had a great opportunity at the hour mark but Jibon headed over the bar, despite being unmarked inside the penalty area, after a pin-pointed cross from Rubel Mia set the forward in the middle of the box.
In the 78th minute, Abahani goalkeeper Shahidul Alam Sohel made a brilliant block to deny Guinean striker Ismael Bangoura’s shot from the box.
The rebound fell onto the feet of Sohel but the midfielder took a weak shot that failed to trouble the defence.
Substitute forward Faysal Ahmed Shitol hit the crossbar in injury time.
After five wins in the first five matches, Friday’s draw didn’t change Chittagong Abahani’s position at the top of table as they earned 16 points from six matches, while Arambagh moved to 10th place with four points from the same number of games.
Chittagong Abahani managed to dominate possession but it was the Motijheel outfit who created more chances to score.
Mohammad Jewel scripted the first real attack in the 17th minute but his right-footed strike at the near post was saved by the keeper.
Chittagong Abahani custodian Ashraful Islam Rana made a brilliant save in the 76th minute to deny a close-range header from Alamu Bukola Olalekaw from Jewel’s cross.
Substitute forward Sumon Ali almost took the lead in the 82nd minute but was unlucky to see his diving header hit the lower portion of the woodwork following Bukola’s cross from the left flank.
One minute before the end of stipulated time, national winger Zahid Hossain hit the woodwork with a wonderful strike from the right edge of the penalty area.
Abahani 0 0 Rahmatganj
Chittagong Abahani 0 0 Arambagh