Kings aim for Odisha win despite hassles

Kings aim for odisha win despite hassles0

Bashundhara Kings, despite some off-the-field issues in India, are looking forward to reaching the AFC Cup knockout stage for the first time when they face Odisha FC in their final group encounter today at the Kalinga Stadium in Bhubaneswar.

The game will begin at 8:00 p.m. (Bangladesh time).

Kings lead the table with 10 points and need just one point to advance to the zonal semifinals, while Odisha FC needs a win to do the same with nine points.

As a result, the game has become a must-win for both sides, who are in excellent form on both the home and international circuits.

The focus on the eve of the match, however, was less on the game and more on the difficulties encountered by the Kings contingent since their arrival in India on Saturday. According to club officials, the team had to wait nearly two hours for a connecting flight from Kolkata to Bhubaneswar before finding accommodation, forcing the cancellation of Saturday’s scheduled training before the only preparation at the match venue yesterday.

“I want the AFC to look into it because when we travel abroad, we’ve had a number of problems in recent games and for years.” This competition and the AFC, in my opinion, deserve more. Unfortunately, we arrived at the hotel yesterday after a two-hour delay. Our guys were given a single room to share. And there was a concert tonight until late at night with music that makes no sense,” Kings coach Oscar Bruzon stated at the pre-match press conference.

The 46-year-old coach, who is directing Kings in their fourth consecutive AFC Cup campaign, has also urged authorities for fair refereeing, citing harsh decisions for their previous two eliminations.

Bruzon also stated that the off-field troubles strengthened their resolve to compete in the inter-zonal semifinals of Asia’s second-tier club championship.

“I think what people don’t realise is that everything that happens makes us stronger, more convinced, more motivated, more creative to overcome and bring the show that the Bangladesh football community has been waiting for years,” said Bruzon, who believes today’s match will be the biggest of the competition and that both teams will take an attacking approach.

Captain Robson Robinho is also aware of the difficulty and the stakes.

“For the first time, we are in a good position for the club and the players, who have been in excellent spirits.” I believe this is our last chance to qualify from this division [group], and I hope we do a fantastic job tomorrow. All of the players have the same goal for the game, which we know is difficult, but we have the opportunity and we need to take it for our club, supporters, and country,” stated the Brazilian forward.

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