Bangladesh have put one foot in the semi-finals of 7-nation 12th SAFF Suzuki Championship 2018 after a win over Pakistan.
Hosts Bangladesh beat Pakistan 1-0 at Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka on Thursday night. After this win, Bangladesh are on top of group A.
Score from Defender Topu Barman at the 85th minute of the match helped Bangladesh to get the victory.
Earlier, Bangladesh in their first group match made a 2-0 win over Bhutan, which have already been eliminated from the race.
Despite the defeat, Pakistan also remained in the meet for the semifinal with three points from two matches with a 2-1 win over Nepal in the tournament opener.
UNB adds: Pakistan have a chance to reach the semifinals if they could manage a win against Bhutan and Bangladesh either beat Nepal or draw in their next group matches, both on Saturday (September 8).
In the day's match, Pakistan defended almost all the time with quick counterattack strategy while Bangladesh continued the forceful game by keeping 61.1 percent ball position.
Bangladesh missed some chances in the second half. In the 69th minute, Masuk Miah Zoni took a header from the centre of the box off a Waly Faisal cross but went high and wide to the right post.
Forward Biplu Ahmed took a right-footed shot from outside the box, but the ball went straight to the grip of the goalie in the 58th minute.
Pakistan forward Muhammad Ali took a right-footed shot from the centre of the box only to go over edging the top right corner of the crosspiece in the 55th minute.
Pakistan captain Saddam Hussain missed a chance in the 46th minute as his right-footed shot from outside the box went high and wide to the right.
Earlier in the first half, Bangladesh started to play a forceful game after 10 minutes and made an attempt in the 29th minute as forward Saad Uddin's right-footed long shot from the left flank went high and wide to the left off a Topu Barman pass.
The hosts continued pressing game and missed two chances as midfielder Masuk Miah Zoni's right-footed shot from outside the box was blocked by Pakistani defence in the 40th minute before forward Mahbubur Rahman's right-footed shot from more than 35 yards missed the left in the 42nd minute.
Pakistan created a couple of quick counterattacks in between 20-30 minutes, but Bangladesh defenders foiled all their efforts.
Bangladesh goalie Sahidul Alam saved the post in the 9th minute as he foiled Pakistani forward Muhammad Ali's header from inside the box, fisting the ball over the crosspiece.
Bangladesh brought two changes in the playing eleven as Shakhawat Hossain Rony and Emon Mahmud came in replacing injured Mahbubur Rahman and Biplu Ahmed respectively.
Pakistan also brought two changes in their playing eleven as Saadullah Khan and Faheem Ahmed replaced injured Mehmood Khan and Muhammad Adil respectively.
Masuk Miah Zoni fouled Pakistani forward Mehmood Khan in the 40th minute and got a yellow card.
Topu Barman was shown a yellow card for excessive celebration pulling off the jersey after scoring the match winning goal.
Pakistan defender Mohsin Ali was shown the yellow card as he committed foul with defender Bishwnath Ghosh.
Points table after each sides playing out two matches:
Team March Win Loss GF GA GD Points
Bangladesh 2 2 0 3 0 +3 6
Nepal 2 1 1 5 2 +3 3
Pakistan 2 1 1 2 1 +1 3
Bhutan 2 0 0 0 6 -6 0