Abahani meet Kings in season-defining clash
Defending champions Bashundhara Kings will be looking to consolidate their lead at the top of the Bangladesh Premier League when the visitors take on Abahani in a crucial encounter at the Shaheed Dhirendhranath Datta Stadium in Cumilla today.
Three-time champions Kings are on top of the 11-team table with 27 points from nine matches, nine points ahead of closet rivals Abahani, who however have a game in hand.
Kings have been in fantastic rhythm this season, staying undefeated while winning 17 of their 18 games in all competitions. A win today would put a fourth successive BPL title squarely in focus.
Abahani, on the other hand, have struggled at times, drawing three of their eight league games. Although they are also undefeated, anything short of a win would see their title hopes in disarray.
However, it is going to be a tough task for the six-time champions, who have never beaten Kings in the professional football league, drawing twice and losing on four occasions.
Abahani only recorded two wins against Kings, first in the Federation Cup final in 2018 and then in the Independence Cup final in December, 2021.
"I have confidence but I also respect Bashundhara. They have been perfect this season -- eight matches, 8 wins [actually nine wins from nine matches] -- so we have to be perfect tomorrow [Friday]," Abahani coach Mario Lemos told The Daily Star.
Despite being in superb form and ahead in the head-to-head battle, Bashun dhara Kings coach Oscar Bruzon afforded Abahani the same respect.
"Abahani are always title contenders. They have been performing well and finding stability in their ideas. They reach this game in top form, so we will have to be at our best," Oscar told The Daily Star.