Winners regain top spot in PPFL with a goal from debut striker Sanday.
KARACHI: KESC regained the top spot in the Pakistan Premier Football League (PPFL) when they defeated Muslim FC 1-0 at the KPT Stadium on Tuesday.
It was a key match for both teams as Muslim FC had replaced KESC last week on the top spot in the league.
The Chaman-based club had registered two consecutive wins to catch up with KESC.
However, new striker for KESC Nigeria’s Oludeyi Abayomi Sanday made the difference for his team. He is the first foreign player to represent a department in the league.
Both teams played a goalless first half with Sanday scoring the winner in the 59th minute on Muhammad Rasool’s pass in his debut appearance at the league.
With the win, KESC now have 36 points after playing 17 matches whereas Muslim FC dropped to second place with 36 points after 21 matches.
KESC coach Hasan Baloch said that Sanday’s inclusion will improve the standard of the team and also promote the league as foreign players can attract larger crowd.
“Sanday has been a good addition and he really impressed us in the first match,” Baloch told The Express Tribune.
“He performed well and embraced the team very quickly; Muslim FC players also got a little rough with him. But he found his focus in the second half. He was phenomenal considering he only practised with the team just a day before the crucial tie.”
Sanday had a rough time when he landed in Karachi last week. He was detained by the Civil Aviation Authorities for two days for incomplete documents. However, he was released by the authorities on Sunday.
Baloch said that KESC needed another striker as the team was only depending on Muhammad Rasool earlier.
“Sanday’s presence will send out a message to other top clubs,” said Baloch. “We only finished the last season with a silver medal, so I hope we’ll win the title this time.”
On the other hand, Rasool said that the first assignment for him as the complementing striker to Sanday is to spend more time with the Nigeria player on and off the field.
“I’m staying with Sanday. I’m his room-mate now and it’s a great experience,” said Rasool. “We are building an understanding with each other that should translate hopefully on the field.
“I believe we desperately needed a striker. Sanday’s inclusion in the league should improve the standard of the PPFL overall. The competition level will raise and other clubs will also consider hiring foreign players after this season.”
KESC will play their next match with PIA on December 9. The team will leave for Lahore on December 14 to begin the third leg of the league where they will play 11 more matches.