NAC win club level football

20 Sept 2009 - Nepal Army Club (NAC) clinched their first title of the year on Sunday. NAC defeated the U-19 team of ANFA Academy 3-1 in the final of Club Level National Football Tournament held at Anbu Khaireni to take home the trophy.

The match took the turn to tie-breaker following a 1-1 stalemate and the added time of the match. Academy´s Rohit Chand´s first strike skied above the post while NAC custodian Bikash Malla saved Deepak Bhusal´s shot. Rupesh KC of the Academy who made second attempt won a goal for the team. On the other hand, Chun Bahadur Thapa, Mahendra Khawas and Hiran Magar converted for NAC which was sufficient to decide the fate of the match. NAC´s Santosh Nepali´s shot rebounded hitting the pole.Earlier, the NAC which lead the match twice had to wait until tie-breaker after they failed to maintain the lead. Amrit Basnet gave lead to NAC in the injury time of the first taking the advantage of the miss-pass of the Academy team. Amrit scored chipping the ball while the opponent custodian was bit ahead of the goalpost.

Technically sound Academy team who gave good lesson to NAC with their performance leveled the match 10 minute before the finishing time. Shiva Shrestha scored for the Academy team who made the physically opponent team helpless with short and quick passes. Shrestha, the man-of- the-match of final, scored through header utilizing a rebounded ball off the powerful rebounded shot of Rohit Chand in the empty post.Again, the NAC again took the lead in the added time too through Ram Kumar Biswas who had entered the ground as the substitute player. Biswas scored in the fifth minute through header. But the young colt of Academy determined to return the goal equalized the match before in the last minute of the added time. Sujal Shrestha headed to score in the free kick of Deepak Bhusal.

“They displayed a technically sound game but the result came in our favor,” NAC coach Raju Shakya commented after the match. “The young players are technically good and they have good team set and they have bright future,” NAC captain Bikash said.NAC coach on the other hand said, “We won the match technically but lost in terms of results.” He added, “Had we not wasted few chances in the beginning we could have won the match in the regular time.”

The winners NAC bagged a purse of Rs 1,11, 111 while Academy took away Rs 50,000. Nirajan Malla of the Academy got the highest scorer award for scoring three goals in the tournament while Bikash Malla and Santosh Nepali got the best goalkeeper and best player award respectively. The Academy also won the fair play award.

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