An in-form Bangladesh Under-15 women’s football team will be looking to retain the title of the SAFF Under-15 Women’s Championship when they take on India in the final at the Changlimithang Stadium in Thimpu, Bhutan today.
The match will kick-off at 7:00pm Bangladesh Standard Time.
Bangladeshi girls, who are unbeaten in their last seven games, will go into today’s match with a 100 per cent winning record.
In the first edition of the championship in Dhaka last year, Bangladesh thrashed India 3-0 in the group stage before beating them again in the final by a solitary goal.
Bangladesh will go into today final as favourites after their crushing 5-0 win over hosts Bhutan in the semi-final. On the other hand, India had to toil hard before defeating Nepal 2-1 in the other semi-final.
Bangladesh are yet to concede a goal in this year’s championship against putting the ball 23 times in the opposition net in four matches.
Coach Golam Rabbani Choton believed not retaining the title would be considered as a failure for his side.
‘We came here only to retain the title,’ Choton said.
‘After winning the first edition of the championship, we continued our training camp only to maintain our supremacy and will give our best to be champions again.’
Captain Maria Manda, who scored two goals in the previous three matches, said they would try to put pressure on the Indians from the very start of the game.
‘This is the match that we came here to play and we are ready to give our best. We will put pressure from the beginning and try to score as early as possible,’ said Manda.
‘We know that it will not be an easy task considering that India are also a good team and they reached the final playing good football.
‘India also have some experienced players, but we are also capable of beating them and lift the trophy for the second successive time.’
Striker Tahura Khatun, who struck four goals in three matches, was also confident of retaining the title.
‘My target is to score as many goals in the final and help my side to win the title,’ she said.
Meanwhile, India coach Firrmin Dsouza expected an attractive final.
‘Bangladesh are a good and speedy team, but we will play with our own strategy,’ Dsouza said.
‘I think it will be very good fighting match in the final because best two sides in the tournament will face each other.’
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