UK Bangladeshi Championship
The aim of the BFA UK Bangladeshi Championship is to showcase the footballing talent amongst the Bangladeshi community in the UK. The tournament was first held in 2001 in London. Since then, the tournament has been hosted in different locations around the country such as Birmingham, Milton Keynes and Oldham. This has given various teams an opportunity to host the UK Bangladeshi Championship on behalf of BFA. The tournament gives the community the chance to compete and meet people from other parts of the UK, share experiences and explore opportunities of working in partnership. We hope this tradition continues and one day we have teams from all parts of the country participating in the championship.
The Bangladesh Football Association (UK) in partnership with Bangla Bantams from Bradford hosted the last two tournaments where the preliminary matches were played in Wanstead (London) and the Final was held in the home stadium of League One club, Bradford City AFC at Valley Parade in Bradford.
BFA UK Bangladeshi Championship 2017
The BFA UK Bangladeshi Championship 2017 preliminary rounds took place on 30th April 2017 at Wanstead Flats in London. Defending Champions, Newark Youth London, won their group and knocked out local rivals Shadwell FC in the semi-finals, 4-1. In the other side of the draw, Beaumont AFC played Mohammedan SC in a toughly fought match which was won 1-0 by Mohammedan SC from a goal by striker Jamal Rahman.
Newark Youth London and Mohammedan SC made the long journey up north with their fans on 21st May 2017 to Bradford to contest the Final of the BFA UK Bangladeshi Championship. On a special day at Bradford, there were several exhibition matches and youth events as part of Bangla Bantams Community Day. The main event was reserved for the BFA UKBC Final to crown the best British Bangladeshi football team in the UK.
Going into the final, Newark Youth London were reigning champions of the competition, but it was Mohammedan SC who stormed out the blocks early as Luwab Mohammed latched on to a cross-field diagonal ball and fired in a stunning strike into the top right-hand corner within 5 minutes to give Mohammedan SC an early 1-0 lead.
An energetic young Newark Youth team pressed against an experienced Mohammedan SC line-up but couldn’t break them down. However, in the second half, Newark Youth striker Rokun struck the bar from a free kick and the pressure was increasing. Newark Youth were rewarded when they were awarded a penalty in the 78th minute. Rokun stepped up and slotted it past the keeper to make it 1-1.
The final ten minutes were nail-biting for both teams but outstanding entertainment for the neutrals as both teams searched for the winner. Mohammedan SC were awarded a throw down the right in injury time. Centre back, Omar Sami Faruque, took the long throw and hoisted it towards the six yard box. As the Newark Youth defence hesitated, Mohammedan’s superstar, Sadique Ali, leaped up everyone and headed into the roof of the net to leave the keeper with no chance to make it 2-1. It was a stunning winner with the final touch of the game and the Mohammedan SC players, bench and fans celebrated by running on to the pitch in jubilation to mark a great moment in style.
Congratulations to Mohammedan SC who have now won a record three UK Bangladeshi Championship trophies. Commiserations to Newark You London who played their part in a fantastic final and just missed out on defending and retaining the title.