Budha subba gold cup final: Three Star face African United

Dharan, March 23:

Nabil Three Star Club and defending champions African United will vie for the championship at the ninth Budha Subba Gold Cup football tournament here on Saturday.

African United will try to retain the title while Three Star will try to win here for the second time when they meet in the final. Three Star had won the seventh edition here. Three Star would be under more pressure considering half their team form the national squad. African United will have no such pressure.

Three Star coach Bal Gopal Maharjan felt the pressure to win. “We are under pressure as everybody expects us to win,” said Maharjan adding their opponent was not a strong team.

African United coach Fuja said that the assembled team would was strong enough to beat Three Star. “My players have the potential to win and they will exhibit the real game in the final,” added Fuja.

Three Star have recently established themselves as a strong force especially in the knock-out tournaments. They also won the Aaha Gold Cup in Pokhara. They beat African United in the quarter-finals before lifting the Pokhara title beating Manang Marsyangdi Club in the final.

African United had won both Sahara Gold Cup and the Budha Subba Gold Cup last year. But they lack the services of strikers Nurudeen Salau and Obagbemiro Junior to pose their strong challenge this time.

Skipper Surendra Tamang could be a major threat for African United’s bid to defend the title here. Striker Tamang has shown his form lately in the tournament with a hat-trick against APF. He could be a devastating force if he finds his form.