A 10-man Bangladesh emerged Group A champions in the SAFF Under-15 Championship when they beat hosts Nepal 2-1 in their final group match at the ANFA Complex in Kathmandu on Sunday.
Ibne Ahad Shakil and Rajon Hawlader scored a goal apiece for the winners in between a goal of Jaan Limbu from penalty kick for the home side.
Bangladesh, who had already qualified for the last four after a huge 9-0 win over Maldives in their first match, would face defending champions India in the first semi-final on November 1.
On the other hand, Nepal who also booked their place in the semi-finals courtesy of their 4-0 win over Maldives, would take on Group B champions Pakistan in the second semi-final on the same day.
The boys in red and green took the lead in the second minute of the match when Shakil headed home following a neat free-kick from captain Mehedi Hasan.
Bangladesh were reduced to 10-man in the 34th minute when their keeper Mitul Marma was shown a straight red card after he brought down a Nepalese player inside the penalty box.
Limbu levelled the margin from the spot.
Despite being a man down, Bangladesh restored the lead in the very first minute of the second half when Rajon placed the ball home following a pass from Towhidul Islam Ridoy.
Bangladesh head coach Mostafa Anowar Parvez praised his charges for a confidence boosting win against the home side. ‘Last year we had a bitter experience of losing to Nepal in the semi-finals. This time we had a target to beat them,’ said Parvez.
Source: New Age.