Hosts Bangladesh will face upper-ranked Burundi in the tough second semifinal of the six-team Bangabandhu International Gold Cup on Thursday eyeing a win, reports UNB.
The match will kick off at 5pm at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in the city. The hosts reached the semifinals as the Group A runners-up with one win and one defeat. They started their campaign conceding 0-2 goals defeat against tournament's top seed Palestine but bounced back crushing Sri Lanka by 3-0 goals in the last group match.
Group B champions Burundi routed Mauritius by 4-1 goals in the first game and thrashed Seychelles by 3-1 goals in their second and last group match.
Title contenders Burundi netted seven goals and conceded just two while Bangladesh scored three goals and conceded two in their group stage.
Burundi forward Nshimirimana Jospin is at the summit of the scorer list of the ongoing meet. Jospin scored four goals with a hat-trick in the group matches.
Among other Burundi scorers, captain-cum-forward Tambwe Amissi scored two and defender Ndikumana Asman scored one. On the other hand, forward Motin Miah netted twice while another forward Mohammad Ibrahim scored one for Bangladesh.
Ahead of the match, Bangladesh Head Coach Jamie Day on Wednesday said they are full of confidence and able to beat the East African side.
"We played very well in the last match against Sri Lanka. We scored goals and kept the clean sheet. The match against Burundi is going to be a tough one. They [Burundi] have a good attacking side and their players are physically strong, but we're going to the game with full of confidence. If you play well and perform in a disciplined and organised way, then you have a good chance to win," Jamie said in a pre-match press conference at Bangladesh Football Federation (BFF) in Motijheel in the city.
"Our first target is to post a win tomorrow (Thursday). We've to defend and utilise chances to score goals. The match may be harder for defenders. Our players have to give their best. To win the tournament will be the fantastic achievement for us. So, we'll do our best," Jamie added.
About their preparations for the crucial match, Jamie said, "Boys trained very well in the last two or three days. Tomorrow's match will be a good challenge for our defenders. They need to be organised and strong against Burundi. Burundi have a strong attacking side, they've scored seven goals in two games. Though the game will be tough for our defenders, there is no extra pressure on them."
The men in red and green got a blow as their reliable defenders Topu Barman will miss the match due to conceding a red card in the last match against Sri Lanka.
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