Asia

India lift SAFF U18 Championship 2019 title after 2-1 win over Bangladesh

India have lifted their maiden SAFF U18 Championship title after defeating Bangladesh 2-1 in the final held at the Halchowk Stadium in Kathmandu, Nepal.

India took the lead very early as Vikram Pratap Singh scored in the second minute, but Bangladesh were back in the game before the half-time break as Yeasin Arafat found the back of the net in the 40th minute.

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The winning goal came in the second-half injury time when Ravi Bahadur Rana scored from 30 yards out to give Floyd Pinto’s India their first South Asian title in the under-18 category.

Meanwhile, Maldives took the third place in the tournament after recording a 1-0 win over Bhutan in the third-place play-off. Ibrahim Imran scored the sole goal of the game in the 75th minute.

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The 2019 tournament was the third edition of the South Asian Football Federation (SAFF) championship. The first two editions were won by Nepal with them defeating India in the 2015 final and Bangladesh in the 2017 decider.

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India’s Ninthoinganba Meetei, the midfielder who plays for NorthEast United in the Indian Super League, was named the most valuable player of the tournament while three players — India’s Gurkirat Singh and Bangladeshi duo Tanbir Hossain and Foysal Ahmed — shared the topscorer award with two goals each.

(Photo: All India Football Federation)

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