Stunning fightback keeps Kings on top
Bashundhara Kings took a massive stride towards qualifying for the knockout stage of the AFC Cup with a brilliant come-from-behind 2-1 win over visiting Maziya S&RC in their penultimate Group D fixture at Bashundhara Kings Arena today.
Kings' Uzbekistani defender Boburbek Yuldashow's header in the 80th minute cancelled out Maziya's Regan Obeng's 10-minute goal.
Brazilian midfielder Miguel Ferreira then struck a stunning winner with a brilliant chip that evaded goalkeeper's outstretched hands and nestled into the top left corner of the goalpost in the 88th minute.
The charges of Oscar Bruzon now just need a win over hosts Odisha FC on December 11 to qualify for the zonal semifinals for the first time in their history and become the second Bangladeshi club to do so after Abahani in 2019.
The win helped the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) champions maintain their lead in the four-team group with 10 points from five games while Maziya sit bottom of the table with three points from the same number of games.
With the win, the Kings also maintained their unbeaten run at the Kings arena in both international and domestic competitions.
The Kings were without their Brazilian captain Robson Da Silva, who was out injured, and looked short of confidence in the final third.
The hosts got a couple of chances to score within the first seven minutes but Nigerian Mfun Sunday Udoh and Brazilian Dorielton Gomes squandered them.
Maziya then took the lead against the run of play in the 10th minute, courtesy of a fumble from goalkeeper Mehdi Hasan Srabon.
The rookie goalkeeper mistakenly passed the ball to Maziya's Vojislav Balabanonvic inside the box, whose shot got blocked by defender Boburbek Yuldashow. But the ricochet took the ball straight to Maziya's Ghanaian midfielder Regan Obeng, who easily fired the ball home.
The Kings looked rattled after conceding the lead and Maziya kept creating chances before the break.
But for the fourth straight match in the AFC Cup, the Kings bounced back after conceding a goal in the first half.
Udoh came close on a few occasions to level the score while Bishwanath Ghosh rescued Kings from being killed off the match with a timely tackle on Hamza Mohamed in the 48th minute.
With just 10 minutes of regular time to go, Sheikh Morsalin, who came in as a substitute in the 68th minute, whipped the ball inside the box from a corner kick which Yuldashow headed home.
Miguel, who had scored against Mohun Bagan and Odisha FC, hit the winning goal with a chip from 30 yards out, as thousands of home fans in the stands erupted into celebration.