Pokhara beat Ilam to go top at NSL

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By A Staff Reporter,Kathmandu, Dec. 7: Pokhara Thunders Football Club (PTFC) reached the top of the Nepal Super League with a win in its fourth match against Sporting Ilam De Mechi Football Club (SIFC) at the Dasharath Stadium.

After earning three points Wednesday night, Pokhara moved to the top of the league standings with eight points. Pokhara leapfrogged from the fourth place to take a point lead over Dhangadhi FC.

The match between PTFC and SIFC was goalless until the first half despite several attempts from both sides. Ilam’s Omar Masdaphi Thiom missed a heading chance in the 6th minute. It was followed by a miss from Fodé Camara in the 29th minute.

However, the second half began differently as Pokhara scored in the starting minutes. PTFC’s Moses G. Twum shot towards the goal after having an open space in the 47th minute. It was stopped by SIFC’s goalkeeper and Captain Bikesh Kuthu; however, he could not hold it. The ball went past Kuthu but could not cross the goal line. Ayush Ghalan tried sending the rebound ball towards the net but could only earn a corner.

Nevertheless, PTFC capitalised on the corner and scored the only goal of the match. The ball from the corner came in front of Sanjeeb Bista after a poor clearance from the PTFC defender. Bista was able to push the ball to the back of the net with the tip of his boot and secure a lead.

After the goal, Pokhara tried defending the lead and made some attempts to extend the lead. Ilam, on the other hand, was trying to pressure the opponent and find an equaliser. SIFC’s centre-back Bimal Pandey missed a header, which would have been the equaliser, in the 67th minute. 

After the loss, SIFC remains in the sixth position with three points in four matches. The three points came from the win against Jhapa FC. Chitwan FC and Butwal FC Butwal Lumbini will be in action at the Dasharath Stadium on Thursday.

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