Sun, 24 September 2023
The Daily Ittefaq

Eleta axed from SAFF squad 

Update : 10 Jun 2023, 09:05

National football team's head coach Javier Cabrera has announced a 23-member final squad for the FIFA tier-1 Int'l friendly match and SAFF Championship, excluding much-talked forward Eleta Kingsley. 

He revealed the final squad at a press conference held on June 9 at Bangladesh Football Federation's conference room, reports BSS.

The Nigerian-born Bangladeshi forward Eleta made his Bangladesh jersey debut against Seychelles last March. Coach Javier also called him in the camp after the friendly match against Seychelles. However, Eleta was not considered eventually in the final squad, four days after the team's residential camp held at Bashundhara Kings arena.

Although Kingsley was left out from the squad, but Javier kept her faith on Bashundhara Kings' forward Sumon Reza in the final squad. 

Explaining the reason for taking Sumon instead of Eleta in the squad, the coach said the team has been formed considering tough competition, capacity and quality. 

A forward's main criterion is scoring in the match and Eleta had the scoring ability, but Javier explained that he has found difference in performance of Eleta from the first leg to the second leg in the league.

National football team's captain Jamal Bhuyan who was present at the press conference, said: "The coach watched the game and make practiced. He (coach) took the decision what he thought the best for the team. We have to plan with those who are now in the team."

Earlier, Javier Cabrera announced a 35-memebr preliminary squad for SAFF Championship. He started the camp with a squad of 30 member excluding five players. Of those 30, seven more have been dropped and made the final squad today. Tutul Hossain Badsha, Rimon Hossain, Masuk Mia Joni, Shahriar Emon, Mehdi Hasan Srabon, Sazzad Hossain and Elita Kingsley were dropped from the squad.

The Bangladesh team will leave here for Cambodia tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon to play a FIFA tier-1 Int'l friendly match against Cambodia on June 15 as a part of preparation for the SAFF Championship. 

On the following day (June 16) after the friendly match, the national team will fly for Bengaluru to take part in the SAFF Championship scheduled to be held from June 21 to August 4.

Bangladesh, who are group in B along with Lebanon, the Maldives and Bhutan, will start their eight-nation SAFF Championship campaign taking on upper ranked Lebanon in their group B opening match scheduled to be held on June 22, one day after the formal kicks off of the championship on June 21.

The remaining two group matches will be held on June 25 and 28. Bangladesh will play against Maldives on June 25 at 4 pm (BST) and face Bhutan on June 28 at 8 pm (BST). All the matches will be held at Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru, India.

Bangladesh squad - Anisur Rahman Zico, Sahidul Alam Sohel, Mitul Marma, Topu Barman, Bishwanath Ghosh, Tariq Raihan Kazi, Alomgir Molla, Rahmat Mia, Mehedi Hasan Mithu, Isa Faysal, Md. Ridoy, Sohel Rana, Sheikh Morsalin, Jamal Bhuyan, Mojibor Rahman Jony, Md Sohel Rana, Rabiul Hasan, Suman Reza, Foysal Ahmed Fahim, Mohammad Ibrahim, Rakib Hossain, Aminur Rahman Sojib and Md. Rafiqul Islam.

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