KARACHI: Pakistan Premier Football League (PPFL) Champions KRL began their campaign at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) President’s Cup in style, defeating Kyrgyzstan’s FC Dordoi 1-0 in Malacca yesterday.
The team faced its toughest competitors in Group B yesterday, in the form of two-time President’s Cup champions FC Dordoi. The win, according to assistant coach Sajjad Mehmood, has set the tone for the club in the tournament.
Both teams played a goalless first half, with Kaleemullah scoring the winner for KRL in the 76th minute.
“It was an important win for us as we have successfully crossed the first hurdle,” Mehmood told The Express Tribune. “The team is really excited about the result.
“We are now hoping that in the next match of the group,Palestine’s Hilal al Quds wins against FC Dordoi, so that our chances for the final can increase. We know we can defeat Hilal al Quds in our second match.”
KRL need to win their second and last match of Group B against Hilal Al Quds on September 27. With the result, KRL lead the group with three points.
Kaleemullah, who has now scored six goals in the competition, is optimistic about their chances of reaching the final.
“We will become the first Pakistani club to play the President’s Cup final if we perform well in the group stage,” said Kaleemullah. “I know our team can win the competition too.”
The top team from the group will play the final against the winner from Group A which includes FC Balkan, Erchim FC and Three Star Club.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 24th, 2013.