U-17s aim to confirm semifinal berth
Fresh off a massive 5-1 win over hosts Sri Lanka, Bangladesh will be looking forward to booking a place in the semifinals of the SAFF U-17 Championship when they take on Maldives in their second and final group match at the Racecourse International Stadium in Colombo on Wednesday.
The match will start at 4:00pm (BST) before Nepal and Bhutan play the day's second match at the same venue.
Bangladesh went through the recovery sessions today, taking part in swimming, gym and light stretching activities after getting off to a winning start.
The batch of boys from the BFF Academy, who have been together for the past year, were upbeat that they could maintain their consistency against Maldives, a team Bangladesh trounced 9-0 in the 2018 edition of the U-16 championship in Nepal.
"We want to go match by match. We also want to keep playing like we did against Sri Lanka and leave with another win," said forward Murshed Ali, who hit two of the five goals against Sri Lanka before celebrating with a Kylian Mbappe-esque pose.
Rubel Sheikh was also confident Bangladesh could replicate their performance. "We played according to the game plan against Sri Lanka and we are hopeful we can put up the same kind of performance tomorrow [Wednesday] and win the match," said Rubel, who scored the first goal against Sri Lanka.
Echoing those sentiments, BFF technical director Paul Smalley, who is also the head coach of the side, expressed satisfaction but wanted to review performances before choosing an eleven against Maldives.
"I'm pleased with their performance. They played according to the plan," Smalley said. "We need to be more clinical because many chances went begging. We want to review the game against Sri Lanka. It is the same preparation for the Maldives game. We will consider the changes we need. However, every player is in good spirits and a happy mood."