Big-budget club Sheikh Jamal DC kept their winning run intact in the Bangladesh Premier League as the Federation Cup champions notched their third victory with a 4-2 win over Feni Soccer Club at the Bangabandhu National Stadium yesterday.
The three successive wins put Sheikh Jamal on top of the 10-team table with nine points, three clear of holders Sheikh Russel KC.
Winger Mobarak Hossain, Haitian Wedson Anselme, Nigerians Emeka Darlington and Okemmiri struck a goal each before Motiur Rahman and Azmol Hossain Biddut each pulled a goal back for Feni Soccer, who are currently placed second from last with one point from three outings.
Despite missing the services of the inspirational Sony Norde and midfielder Mamunul Islam for the third and second match respectively due to injuries, Sheikh Jamal toyed with lowly Feni Soccer, who came into the match on the back of a creditable draw against four-time champions Abahani. The non-Dhaka outfit however failed to reprise the spirited show they put in against the same opponents during their 0-1 loss in the Federation Cup.
Sheikh Jamal established their dominance over Feni Soccer and took a 27-minute lead through winger Mobarak, who headed a Wedson corner home from the near post.
The former league champions doubled the lead in the stoppage time of the first half when Wedson, who was brought down inside the box by Akramuzzaman, converted the spot-kick. After the break, in-form hitman Darlington made the margin 3-0 by striking his sixth goal of the league in the 62nd minute with an angular shot from the right.
Okemmiri sealed Jamal's third successive victory in the 69th minute with a 35-yarder that bounced once and found the back of the Feni Soccer net.
To test his reserve bench, Sheikh Jamal coach Joseph Afusi brought three changes -- including benching first-choice goalkeeper Ziaur Rahman -- but the changes put Sheikh Jamal under pressure and led to two goals being conceded in the last ten minutes.
Motiur reduced the margin with a header off an Alauddin corner in the 81st minute while Biddut converted a spot kick in the 90th minute after referee Mizanur Rahman awarded a penalty following substitute defender Kesto Kumar's foul on Syed Rashid Turzo inside the box.
“I am happy with nine points but we conceded four goals in three games. I think we need to work hard in this area,” said Afusi. “Being only three points clear, there is nothing to feel complacent about at this stage but it is good for us that other contenders are dropping points.”