Sports Correspondent – The News
KARACHI: Faisalabad’s Lyallpur FC scored twice in stoppage time to hold Nushki’s Baloch FC 2-2 as the Pakistan Premier Football League resumed after a 12-day gap due to national team’s camp at the Faisal Town Football Ground in Lahore on Monday.
“What can I say as we missed several chances. But I am happy that we at least scored two goals in the end to level the match,” Lyallpur FC coach Mohammad Habib told ‘The News’.
Meanwhile, Baloch FC manager Shoaib Ahmad said that his team should have won the match.
“We were right on top but we made some blunders in the deep to concede the unexpected goals that denied us two vital points,” Shoaib lamented.
After a barren first half, Baloch FC went ahead through Fazal Mohammad in the 56th minute. Baloch FC, having a good experience at the top level, doubled their lead in the 84th minute when Fazal landed his second. However, Lyallpur FC, playing their first season, struck two goals through Naeemullah and Rahman Muneer during injury time to bring the parity in a sensational way.
The single point helped Lyallpur FC to stretch their tally to 10 points after 19 outings. Baloch FC moved to 15 points after 20 appearances.
Both the teams are heading towards certain relegation as this season six teams will be demoted to the PFF League B Division.
Previously, two teams used to be relegated but in order to improve the quality of the marathon on the advice of the world football governing body (FIFA), Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) has decided to limit the next season to only 12 outfits instead of 16.
Karachi Electric Supply Company (KESC) are on the top with 39 points from 18 outings. They have a decent chance this season to lift the title. The induction of the Nigerian striker Oludeyi Abayomi has helped them so far as the foreigner has scored three goals in two games that KESC won against Muslim FC and Pakistan International Airlines (PIA).
Chaman’s Muslim FC are at the second spot with 36 points from 21 matches. Pakistan Air Force (PAF), who have 33 points from 17 games, also this season seem to be in great form and the way they edged strong KRL and Army in their last matches shows that they are also one of the tough contenders for the crown.
However, it would yet to be seen whether the star-studded KRL will be able to regain their top form they are badly missing at the moment.
They have 23 points from 13 meetings, slightly below KESC, who have also maintained a decent goal-average of 15 so far.
Overall it would be the most interesting phase that will last till February 8 unabated.
Today’s fixtures: PACA v Army (Battle X Stadium, Shami Road Lahore Cantt), Navy v PAF (Faisal Town Football Ground, Lahore).