Mohammedan beat Abahani to win first Federation Cup in 14 years

Mohammedan beat abahani to win first federation cup in 14 years0

Mohammedan captain Souleymane Diabate scored all four goals as the Black and Whites edged out a dramatic 4-2 triumph on penalties against arch-rivals and holders Abahani in Cumilla on Tuesday to win their first Federation Cup trophy in 14 years. The victory gave Mohammedan their first Federation Cup trophy since they were initially eligible for the competition.

Mohammedan’s substitute goalkeeper Ahsan Habib Bipu stopped shots from the Abahani captain Raphael Augusto, who stepped up to take the first penalty, and Daniel Colindres as Mohammedan, despite Shahriar Emon’s miss, ensured their first trophy in nine years at the Dhirendranath Datta Stadium after the regulation and extra time both ended in a 4-4 tie.

Mohammedan had taken the lead from the penalty spot in the additional time of the first half of extra time after Diabate, who had already scored a hat trick in the opening 90 minutes of play.

Diabate was put through on goal by Mohammedan midfielder Shahriar Emon with a superbly placed ball, but the Malian attacker was brought down inside the penalty area by Abahani goalkeeper Shahidul Alam Sohel. Mohammedan was awarded the penalty kick. Diabate smoothly completed a penalty kick, demonstrating that he does not make mistakes.

In spite of this, Abahani defender Rahmat Mia scored a goal from beyond the penalty area in the 117th minute to once again bring parity in the game, which ultimately led to the much anticipated “clasico” of the country being decided by penalty kicks.

Both teams scored three times throughout the time allotted for regulation, which resulted in a tie score at the end of the period. After Faisal Ahmed Fahim scored the game’s opening goal in the 16th minute and Daniel Colindres added another goal in the final few minutes before the half-time whistle, Abahani went into the locker room with a two-goal lead.

Mohammedan got back on track in the second half when their skipper Diabate scored one in the 54th minute, and then he netted the equalizer six minutes later to inject life into the final in front of a cheering crowd. Mohammedan won.

Emeka Ogbugh of Abahani extended their advantage once again in the 65th minute, but Mohammedan captain Diabate completed his hat-trick in the 83rd minute as the game concluded 3-3 in regular time. Extra time was not played.

After enduring a prolonged dry spell, Mohammedan emerged victorious in the 2023 Federation Cup as the only team to go undefeated. The Black and Whites had finished first in their group, finishing ahead of Sheikh Jamal DC, Rahmatganj MFS, and AFC Uttara. They then proceeded to eliminate Chittagong Abahani and Bashundhara Kings, the two teams who were considered to be the favorites, in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively.

In the meantime, Abahani, who had won four Federation Cup championships in the previous six seasons, concluded the season without any trophy for the second time since the debut of Bashundhara Kings in the top-flight in 2018-19 season. 

This is the second time that Abahani has finished a season without any silverware since the arrival of Bashundhara Kings. The only competition that took place during the 2019-20 season that was affected by the COVID-19 epidemic was the Federation Cup. The Sky Blues finished the season without a single prize.

Earlier on in the current campaign, Bashundhara Kings were successful in claiming two of the three trophies available. They also achieved a record fourth league victory in a row after their success in the Independence Cup.

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