Sheikh Russel KC won their first match under new coach Dragon Djukanovic, in the Bangladesh Premier League, after a 3-1 win over second-from-bottom Feni Soccer Club at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
Last season's treble-winners, who had lost three of their previous four matches since Djukanovic took over the coach's job on April 20, took a 2-0 lead in the first half through strikes from Anwar Hossain and Mohammad Sumon, before Mathew Mendy reduced the arrears in the 78th minute for Feni. Substitute midfielder Pascal Millien restored the two-goal lead for Sheikh Russel just before the final whistle.
The win lifted the defending champions to sixth position with 20 points from 16 matches while Feni remained in ninth position with 11 points from 18 matches.
Sheikh Russel took the lead in the eighth minute when Anwar finished off a move from Sumon by slotting in a left-footed shot from inside the box. The All Blues dominated play in the first half and doubled the lead in the 28th minute when Sumon side-volleyed from top of the six-yard box on a cross from Fazle Rabbi.
Feni got their act together in the second half and after a spate of attacks, minimised the deficit through Mendy, who received a through pass in the middle of the Russel half and ran past the opposition defenders before rounding the keeper and slotting at the back of the net. The match saw a few more end-to-end attacks and one of those, deep into stoppage time, resulted in Sheikh Russel's third goal. Haitian playmaker Millien, who had come in as a substitute midway through the first half, took an ambitious shot from just inside the box, which managed to slip under the Feni goalkeeper Mohammad Nehal and into the net after taking a deflection off a defender.