Charged up Bangladesh face Bhutan in semifinal

Bangladesh women's football team captain Sabina Khatun and her teammates train ahead of the semifinal clash against BhutanBFF

Bangladesh women’s team will face Bhutan in the first semifinal of the 6th edition of SAFF Women’s Championship at the Dasharath Rangasala Stadium in Kathmandu, Nepal on Friday, reports nes agency BSS.

The match kicks off at 1:15pm (Bangladesh Standard Time), which will be followed by the second semifinal between host Nepal and India at the same venue at 5:45pm.

Bangladesh won all three group phase matches to emerge as Group A champions and now the girls in red and green are focusing on the Bhutan match to secure a spot in the final.

Bangladesh captain Sabina Khatun with her Bhutanese counterpart Pema Choden Tshering

Prior to the match against Bhutan, Bangladesh head coach Golam Robbani Choton told the press on Thursday, “We respect Bhutan because they have proved their worth by reaching this stage… There is no question of taking them (Bhutan) lightly... My girls will fight with everything to claim a victory over Bhutan.

“They (Bangladesh) are fully prepared. They will have to repeat their performances they showed in the three group stage matches to win against Bhutan,” Chotan said when asked if he feels relaxed ahead of the clash.

Choton informed that all the players are physically fit and prepared for Friday’s semifinal match.

Bangladesh skipper Sabina Khatun said the Bhutan team deserves respect. She added that her team would play their natural game and take to the field with a goal-scoring mindset against Bhutan.

Asked if she has any personal target in the semifinal, the prolific striker, who has scored five goals against Bhutan in her career, said she would give her maximum effort.

Bangladesh earlier defeated the Maldives 3-0 in their opening match before thrashing Pakistan 6-0 in their second match.

Bangladesh then made history by claiming their maiden win over India, a 3-0 triumph, which also ensured they finished as group champions.

Bhutan, on the other hand, suffered a 0-4 goal defeat to Nepal in their tournament opener but bounced back to register a thumping 5-0 win over Sri Lanka in their second match.