MMC, Army record wins – The Himalayan Times – Nepal’s No.1 English Daily Newspaper

MMC, Army record wins - The Himalayan Times - Nepal's No.1 English Daily Newspaper

https://thehimalayantimes.com/sports/mmc-army-record-wins

KATHMANDU, DECEMBER 10

Manang Marshyangdi Club and Tribhuvan Army Football Club registered victories in the Qatar Airways Martyrs Memorial A Division League here at the Dasharath Stadium today.

Afeez Olawale Oladipo and Dinesh Rajbanshi scored on either half to help MMC beat Friends Club 2-0 and send the team to the top of the table.

MMC accumulated 10 points from four matches to replace Satdobato Youth Club, who have seven points with one match on hand. Friends faced their second defeat and are at 10th position with two points.

Olawale opened the scoring in the 41st minute when the unmarked Nigerian recruit headed home from close following a cross from his skipper Anjan Bista. MMC doubled the tally in the 73rd minute through a head goal from Rajbanshi, who was fed by Pujan Uparkoti in a set piece.

Earlier, Friends were denied an early lead after Saroj Yonjan blocked Nathaniel Jude Garcia’s indirect from inside the box. Friends earned the chance after MMC goalkeeper Bishal Sunar collected a back pass from Pujan Uperkoti in the eight minute. Olawale saw his strike from six-yard box saved by Friends goalie Rahul Ranchandra Yadav in the 39th minute. Olawale was denied again by Yadav in the 72nd minute, while the Friends custodian stopped Adelaja Somide from scoring in one-onone situation 11 minutes later.

MMC coach Fuja Topa lauded his players for a good performance.

“This is my first match this season and we played well,” said the Nigerian coach who arrived in Kathmandu on Tuesday. Friends coach Mrigendra Mishra said the team missed the services of three key players including skipper Prakash Budhathoki.

“It was a tough match for us and we did not have key players.

Still, we created some opportunities but again failed to convert them,” he said.

In another match, George Prince Karki and Jagajeet Shrestha scored one goal each as TAFC defeated Chyasal Youth Club. TAFC moved up to second with eight points, while Chyasal remained at the eighth position with four points.

TAFC took the lead in the 19th minute through a header from striker Karki following a cross from Tanka Basnet.

Shrestha doubled the lead in the 36th minute when the former national team striker found the back of the nets on a pass from Gautam Shrestha, a minute after Sesehang Angdambe saw his strike blocked by Chyasal goalkeeper Arpan Karki. TAFC goalkeeper Bikesh Kuthu denied Ajit Gurung in the 44th minute, while TAFC striker Karki headed against the woodwork on a cross from Bibek Basnet four minutes into the second half.

Army coach Nabin Neupane said each game was crucial in title race. “Our strikers have scored goals and I think that’s a positive aspect for the team,” he said. “We need to improve on certain areas as the midfield has not been able to produce goals for the team,” added Neupane, who was concerned about the injuries to the players.

“The players have started picking up injuries and that might be a setback in latter stages of the league,” he said.

Chyasal coach Bal Gopal Sahukhala was frustrated with his team’s performance. “We could not play as expected in the first half and Army performed well,” he said. “We tried by changing the formation in the second half but the players failed to produce goals.”

A version of this article appears in the print on December 11, 2021, of The Himalayan Times.

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