Nepal slumped to 2-1 defeat after conceding a late stoppage-time goal against Pakistan in SAFF Championship 2018 played at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka of Bangladesh today.
Mohammad Ali Dabous scored in the added minutes of the second half to snatch a last-minute victory over Nepal in the opening fixture of the competition. Bimal Gharti Magar equalised for Nepal against the run-of-play on the 83rd minute of the second half after trailing to the first-half penalty goal.
Pakistan were awarded a penalty kick in the 36th minute after Nepal’s skipper Biraj Maharjan nudged the opponent player from behind in the D-box area. Muhammad Riaz then sent the goalie another way before coolly slotting the ball into the bottom left corner of the net to give his team a deserved first-half lead. Riaz scored his fifth International goal for Pakistan.
Nepal nearly equalised in the dying minutes of the first half but the diving header from Suman Aryal went straight into the arms of the Pakistani goalie Yousuf Butt. After the interval, Nepal came out all guns blazing, but poor finishing and defensive lapse cost them the game against the formidable opponent today.
Nepal are pitted along with the hosts Bangladesh, Pakistan and Bhutan in Group A, whereas India, Sri Lanka and the Maldives are in Group B.
Earlier, Nepal had suffered a 1-0 loss against the same opponent in the Asian Games in Indonesia. In the next fixture, Nepal will take on Bhutan on Thursday.