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The sheer domination of foreign forwards in scoring goals is common so far and the Saif’s local recruits took the chances in the absence of their Rwandan top scorer Emery Bayisenge who had scored three goals in previous two matches

Arifur Rahman and Javed Ahmed netted one each as Saif Sporting Club continued their unbeaten run in the Bangladesh Premier League to move on top with a 2-0 win over Muktijoddha SKC away at Sheikh Fazlul Haque Mani Stadium in Gopalganj on Tuesday.

The sheer domination of foreign forwards in scoring goals is common so far and the Saif’s local recruits took the chances in the absence of their Rwandan top scorer Emery Bayisenge who had scored three goals in previous two matches.

Arifur, who started on right wing in the place of injured Emery, headed the opener in the 18th minute after Murolimzhon Akhmedov’s free-kick was brought down by Riyadul Hasan toward the unmarked winger.

The hosts had a couple of chances within three minutes but Paul Emile’s shot was saved at the near post and defender Mehedi Hasan’s header in a free-kick was denied by the crossbar. Later on, Ismail Bangoura found his header on grip of Pappu Hossain before Mohammad Sohel’s attempt on one-on-one flew over.

Deiner Cordoba earned a penalty just before the break after being brought down by Emile but the Colombian forward’s take-on from the spot was brilliantly saved by Mahfuz Hasan Pritom with a dive to his left.

Saif’s young full-back Yeasin Arafat, the first local scorer in the ongoing league, rescued his side at the start of the second half with an impressive block against Bangoura’s goal-bound attempt after leaving the keeper behind.

Jamal Bhuiyan, who sustained a calf-muscle injury last match, left out of the squad which paved the way for Javed to start for the first time and the midfielder doubled the lead in the 57th minute.

Snatching away possession with quick move, Javed rounded off a couple of defenders before his neat grounder outside the box found its way home into far post.

The third victory in four matches sent Saif solely at the top of the table with ten points, though, playing one game more than the reigning champions Bashundhara Kings and runners-up Abahani who have seven points apiece.

Result

Muktijoddha 0 – 2 Saif Sporting (Arifur 18’, Javed 57’)

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