Bangladesh were eliminated from the AFC U-16 Championship Qualifiers following a 3-0 defeat to Yemen at the Aspire Stadium in Doha last night.
The boys in red and green had raised slight hopes of qualification for the 16-team final round following their 3-0 win against Bhutan after having lost the opening game 2-0 against Qatar.
And the charges of Robert Ryles kept the Yemenis at bay for two-thirds of the game, but once they conceded the opening goal, the resistance completely broke down.
Although Yemen completely dominated the first half, they did not have too many open chances except in the 15th minute, when Ahmed Hasan Murshed managed to beat Bangladesh goalkeeper Mehedi Hasan only to see his shot cannon off the far post.
Bangladesh hardly made any attacking moves, with their best effort of the half being a powerful attempt from the edge of the box by midfielder Saif Hassan Saeed, with a Yemeni defender heading the ball clear for a corner.
The game continued to flow in the same fashion, with the Yemenis having a world of possession, but the Bangladesh defence held firm until a superb effort from Mohammed Ali Hassan undid Bangladesh’s resistance.
The Yemeni forward received a through ball from a teammate and expertly shrugged off his marker, Bangladesh captain Jony Shikder, before picking the corner of the net.
The lead was doubled eight minutes later when substitute Hamzah Mahross headed home a corner before he made the scoreline 3-0 six minutes later.
The margin of defeat could have been larger had it not been for an excellent penalty save by the Bangladesh goalkeeper in stoppage time, but Bangladesh’s late capitulation was disappointing in itself.
In the last edition of the qualifiers two years ago, Bangladesh lost against eventual group winners Yemen 2-0, but earned a stunning 2-0 win over Qatar to finish second in the three-team group.