The Bangladesh national football team returned home yesterday morning after advancing to the next round of the World Cup pre-qualifiers with a 3-0 aggregate win following a goalless draw against Pakistan in their second leg match in Lahore.
The booters will now face Lebanon in the first leg away match on July 23 before hosting them in Dhaka on July 28 but they will get no opportunity to practice together due to the Grameenphone Super Cup which starts on Friday and is scheduled to end on July 19, just one day before they leave for Beirut.
“It would have been better, had we got few opportunities to practise together but playing Super Cup will be one type of practice for us but we all playing for the national team will have to be careful about injuries as the away match against Lebanon is a crucial game for us,” said captain Biplob Bhattacharjee after returning home from Pakistan.
“As there is no way to avoid the Super Cup, we must concentrate on the Lebanon ties after this tournament. If we can hold them in the away match, then we will have a good chance to do well in the home match,” said the Muktijoddha Sangsad goalkeeper.
Biplob and his teammates were pleased to see the arrangement of the security system in Lahore but the tight security made them unhappy as they were confined to just the hotel and playing ground.
“The match we played against Pakistan in Lahore was a tough one for us as the opponent players put up their physical strength rather than fair play. Besides, we were in a bit of anxiety after a bomb was blasted in Lahore hours before our match,” said Biplob adding that the Macedonian coach was satisfied with their performance as they played in line with the coaches instruction.
-With The Daily Star input