Bangladesh Under-18 National Women’s Football Team returned home on Monday, clinching their maiden SAFF Under-18 Women’s Championship beating Nepal by 1-0 goal in the final at the floodlit Changlimithang Stadium in Thimphu, Bhutan on Sunday.
The proud women footballers arrived at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport at around 8:30am to touch the home soil after being crowned the unbeaten champions in the tournament.This was the 2nd consecutive victory for Bangladesh team against Nepal in the recently concluded SAFF Championship after beating the Himalayan nation by 2-1 goals in group match.
Young eves brought SAFF glory for the nation with the winning goal of Masura Parvin powered by an energetic and skillful all-round performance by the whole team.
President Abdul Hamid, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina and Speaker Dr Shirin Sharmin Chaudhury greeted the girls for clinching the title of SAFF U-18 Women’s Championship.
Bangladesh were crowned the unbeaten champions of the tournament and ended the regional championship with the distinction of conceding just a single goal in the whole tournament.
Armed with the indomitable confidence earned through years of backbreaking hard work, Young eves continued to play the attacking brand of football which has become their trademark. Quick and accurate passes, insightful back-ups followed up with coordinated attacks have been the signature style of football played by Bangladesh’s young eves and this strategy did not fail to deliver once again.
Bangladesh could have had their first taste of success on the 7th minute if Krishna Rani Sarkar could have utilised the tough chance arising a heaven bound shot by Bangladesh goalie Rurna Chakma.The goal kick landed midway into the field and was received beautifully by Krishna who made sure that she kept the momentum of the ball going forward. Eventually she outran Nepal defenders to find herself on a one-to-one with Nepal goalie. Due to the momentum of the ball she missed the target.
Young eves continued to make inroads into Nepal defence throughout the first-half but could not convert chances into goals as the match went into the half-time with the scoreline of 0-0.
But, the brave booters of Bangladesh finally had their moment of euphoria on the 49th minute as Bangladesh scored their winning goal. In a show sheer brilliance, Bangladesh forward Masura Parveen headed a straight flyer from the midfield into Nepal’s nets to give Bangladesh the all-important lead. The long hauler which was headed by Masura originated from a free-kick off the mid-field.
Nepal fought hard to equalise the score-line from then onwards but Bangladesh eves were just too good for Nepalese Under-18 girls to handle. Bangladesh’ young eves eventually left the field with a comprehensive win.
Siraj Jahan Shopna of Bangladesh was adjudged the highest scorer of the tournament scoring eight goals.
Bangladesh reached the final eliminating hosts Bhutan 4-0 goals in the second semifinal last Friday while Nepal reached the final denying the South Asian giant India beating them by 3-1 goals in a penalty shootout in the 1st semifinal after 1-1 draw in the stipulated period and also in the extra time.