Tajikistan will face favourite Palestine Thursday while Nepal play the same opponent Saturday
Reigning champion Nepal are no more favourite in the Bangabandhu Gold Cup as they are on the brink of getting out of the tournament after conceding a 2-0 defeat against Tajikistan in their first Group A match at Sylhet District Stadium Tuesday.
Nepal head coach Bal Gopal Maharjan later admitted in the post-match press conference that the participation of more strong teams raised the standard and competitiveness of the tournament. He however, expressed satisfaction with his side’s performance despite the defeat.
Tajikistan almost broke the deadlock two minutes into the clock when midfielder Mihammad Jon Rahimov’s quick left-footer was fisted away by Nepal goalkeeper Bikesh Kuthu for the cost of a corner.
Skipper Fatkhuloev Fatkhullo put Tajikistan ahead in the 26th minute from a penalty. Nepal defender Ananta Tamang brought down forward Ergashev Jahongir inside the box to gift the penalty before Fatkhullo converted the chance from the spot.
Sylhet, a hotbed for Bangladesh footballers https://t.co/mMUsn1GRFN#Sylhet has a long tradition of providing star #footballers to the #national team and #Biplo Ahmed, Mahbubur Rahman #Sufil and Masuk Miah #Jony are the latest inclusions.— Dhaka Tribune Sports (@Sport_DT) October 2, 2018
Forward Tursunov Komron came off the bench to double the lead in the 70th minute, heading home a Fatkhullo cross from the left edge of the box.
Nepal had one of their best chances two minutes later but Tajikistan keeper Rizoev Rustam made a superb save to punch away midfielder Sujal Shrestha’s powerful strike.
Tajikistan will face favourite Palestine Thursday while Nepal play the same opponent Saturday.
Nepal 0 2 Tajikistan (Fatkhuloev 27-P, Tursunov 69)
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The game will be held in Sylhet