Thursday, April 25, 2024

Emeka shines in Abahani’s hard fought victory

Staff Correspondent

Abahani’s two-goal hero Emeka Christian (C) tries an overhead-kick against Chittagong Mohammedan during their Citycell Super Cup match at the BNS on Friday. — Sanaul Haque
Abahani’s two-goal hero Emeka Christian (C) tries an overhead-kick against Chittagong Mohammedan during their Citycell Super Cup match at the BNS on Friday. — Sanaul Haque

Title contenders Dhaka Abahani registered a hard working 2-1 victory over Chittagong Mohammedan in a lively match of the Super Cup at the Bangabandhu National stadium on Friday.
With the two consecutive wins Abahani now just need a draw in the last match against Sheikh Russell to reach the last-four. Chittagong Moham-medan will also ensure a semi-final berth if they win against Rahmatganj in their last encounter.
Abahani started in a cautious way anticipating quick counter-attacks of Chittagong Mohammedan. The insertion of the two holding midfielders, Arif Khan Joy and Pranatosh, confirmed Abahani were determined to stop the opposition team’s flow of the game. The African trio of Chittagong Moham-medan – Guinean, Camara and Raphael Sagno and Liberian Anthony Pele Doe – gave Abahani defence a torrid time.
Awudu Ibrahim, the Ghanian playmaker of Abahani, was inspirational behind every move of the Dhanmondi outfit and their strike force of Emily and Emeka Christian caused constant threat to the opposition to turn the match into a thrilling encounter. However, both the teams lost their temper in the second half and the referee had to flash the yellow card on four occasions in his bid to control the situation.
Chittagong Moham-medan dominated the opening minutes with their power and possession leaving Abahani busy in their own half. In the 22nd minute, Raphael Sagno set Nasir free but the former Army forward blasted the ball wide.
Abahani started to hit back after absorbing the pressure and in the 37th minute, Emeka unleashed a side-volley from an Abul corner that floated over the bar.
However, Abahani were stunned in the 39th minute when Raphael Sagno scored with a superb side-volley off a gentle head of Anthony Pele Doe. Doe set Raphael free off a Kaiser cross and Raphael’s brilliant effort from the middle of the box dipped over Abahani goalkeeper Biplob into the far post.
Chittagong Mohammedan’s joy lasted just five minutes as Emeka restored the parity in the 44th minute. The ever working Awudu sent a minus off a Waly Faisal throw in and agile Emeka showed his positional sense to hit the back of the net between the three defenders.
The second half saw players take a physical approach disrupting the normal flow of the game. Joy and Awudu Ubrahim of Abahani and Camara and Anthony Pele were cautioned. However, Chitagong Abahani gradually lost their concentration and Abahani dominated the game in the dying minutes.
Three minutes from the stipulated time, Emeka struck the winner. Defender, Shujon unleashed a powerful volley off a Jahed Parvez corner that rebounded off the defensive wall. Unmarked Emeka coolly placed the ball into the net to ensure the victory. With the second goal, Emeka took his tally of goals to four. In the Abahani’s previous game he also scored a brace against Rahmatganj.

Courtesy of NewAgebd

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