Defending champions Bangladesh U-15 National Football Team will take on Bhutan in their opening match of the SAFF U-15 Championship scheduled to be held today at Kalyani Stadium in Kolkata.
The match kicks off at 12:30pm (BST).Five of the South Asian countries are taking part in the regional championship.
The five participating teams – defending champions Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Bhutan and Sri Lanka — are playing in the round-robin format from where the top two teams will advance into the final slated for August 31.
The two times champions Bangladesh, who beat Pakistan 3-2 in penalty shoot-out in the last edition’s final held in Nepal, will square off their second match against Sri Lanka on August 25 before playing Nepal and host India on August 27 and 29 respectively.
Earlier, India got off to a winning start in the championship beating Nepal by 5-0 goals while Bhutan suffered a 2-3 goals defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka in their opening match.
Earlier on Tuesday, Holders Bangladesh Under-15 Football team beat United Sports Club U-15 side by 3-1 goals in a practice match at Kalyani Stadium in West Bengal.
Bangladesh clinched their first title of SAFF Under-15 Championship beating India in penalty shootout (4-2) in the final at the Sylhet District Stadium on August 18, 2015 while they clinched the title for the second time beating Pakistan in penalty shootout (3-2) in the final at the ANFA Complex in Kathmandu on November 3, 2018.A 30-member Bangladesh team — 23 booters and 7 officials — reached Nadia district in West Bengal Monday to participate in the competition.
The 23-member squad: Md Rakibul Islam, Al Mirad, Md Alamin Rahman, Sayed Nayeem Ahmed, Md Pias Ahmmed Nova, Shahin Molla, Mehdi Hasan Srabon, Apurbo Mali, Shuvo Sarkar, Munna Ahmed, Md Emon Islam Babu, Md Arifur Rahman Raju, Sirajul Islam Rana, Md Rabby Hosen, Sajed Hasan Jummon Nijum, Mohammad Azizul Hoque Ananto, Kazirul Islam Hridoy, Jayanto Lal, Md Sabbir Gazi, Md Golam Rabby, Md Badsha Mia, Md Rahib Hossain and Jony Sikder.