Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) Football champions Bashundhara Kings plan to tour the Maldives to play friendly football matches against two leading Maldives clubs—TC Sports and Maziya Sports and Recreation Club —in October.
National star-studded and the formidable foreign footballers based Bashundhara Kings are likely to fly for the Maldives in the middle of October to play friendly matches as a part of their preparation for the country's ensuing domestic football season.
Earlier, the Kings were placed in the four-team Group E of the Asian 2nd tier Club Football Tournament, the AFC Cup, were scheduled to play their five remaining group matches in the Maldives from October 23 to November 4 this year, but they suffered a big blow as the AFC Cup’ has been cancelled in the dying moment on September 10 due to flight restriction following Covid-19 pandemic.
As the apex body of Asian Football, the AFC, cancelled the AFC Cup’2020, featuring all the Group E matches in the Maldives, that make the Bashundhara Kings interested to start their preparation for the country’s domestic season in the Maldives, playing preparatory matches against their two Group E rivals--TC Sports and Maziya SRC of the Maldives,
Bashundhara Kings already brought their three foreign booters--Brazilians Robson Azevedo da Silva, Jonathan da Silveria Fernandes Reis and Argentine Hernan Barcos--in the capital on September 10 to join training camp for the AFC Cup and as well as for the ensuing domestic football season.
However, the country’s new domestic football season is likely to begin with the Federation Cup Football in the first week of December after completing the necessary registration formalities in October-November next.
In a professional football league committee meeting recently, the committee allowed maximum four foreign booters for a team including one from Asia and all the four foreign footballers will be entitled to play together in a match for the team.
Meanwhile, on last Saturday (Sept 19), Bashundhara Kings completed their quota of four foreign booters for the ensuing football season (2020-21) confirming 33 years old Iranian defender Khaled Shafiei in Asian quota.
Khaled Shafiei, who played in the Persian League for Sepahan FC and in the South Korean K-League for FC Seoul, is expected to arrive Dhaka in the first week of October as the club’s 4th and last foreign player as a replacement of their Argentine defender Nicholas Delmonte.
In the AFC Cup, BPL champions Kings was on the top of the four-team Group E after their 5-1 victory over Maldivian club TC Sports in the first match at Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka on March 11.
Chennai City FC of India and Maziya S&RC of the Maldives shared the second slot following a 2-2 draw between the two teams played in Chennai, also on March 11.