By a Staff Reporter
Kathmandu – Machhindra FC secured a resounding 7-3 victory over FC Khumaltar in a thrilling match on Tuesday at the Chyasal Stadium, with Afeez Olawale Oladipo standing out as the star performer by scoring five goals on his own. This was the highest-scoring game of the ongoing Martyr’s Memorial ‘A’ Division League.
In addition to Olawale’s five-goal haul, Bimal Gharti Magar and Bijaya Bhujel also scored one goal each for Machhindra FC. Meanwhile, Messouke Oloumou scored twice and Stephane Binong scored one goal for Khumaltar.
Olawale opened the scoring in the 25th minute, and Bimal Gharti Magar doubled Machhindra’s lead just four minutes later. Olawale then scored his second goal in injury time to make it 3-0 at halftime. Machhindra then added four more goals in the second half while conceding three.
Olawale completed his hat-trick in the 56th minute by converting a penalty kick, becoming the first player to do so in the ongoing league. Messouke pulled one back for Khumaltar in the 61st minute, but Olawale scored two more goals to make his five for the match. Stephane Binong scored from a penalty in the 76th minute, and Messouke also scored his second goal in the 81st minute to make it 6-3.
Bijaya Bhujel then scored Machhindra’s seventh goal in the 87th minute, securing their third victory in the league.
After the match, Olawale stated that he dedicate his five-goal performance to Tshring Gurung, who suffered a serious injury in the last game.
“After missing two opportunities in the last game, I was ready for anything today and knew that I might still get another chance. It was a now-or-never situation, so I tried to believe in myself. Before the match, the coach told me to convert any chance I get, and I just followed his instructions.” said Olawale after scoring 5 goals. Olawale also dedicated his goals to Tshring Gurung, who suffered a serious injury in the previous game.
After Bimal won a penalty for Machhindra, Olawale went to hand the ball to Chencho Gyeltshen, even though he had a chance to complete his hat-trick. However, Chencho declined to take the penalty, and Olawale went on to complete his hat trick. Explaing that moment, Olawale stated “Actually, Chencho wasn’t feeling good for the past few days. Before the second half, I told him that if we get a penalty, for me I will get a hat trick, but I wanted you to score to boost your confidence. So I tried to give the ball to him and said, ‘Play it.’ But he replied, ‘No, go for your hat trick.’ I gave the ball to him twice, but he replied the same way twice. As a striker, I didn’t have any other option and I took the penalty.”
Machhindra FC now has 12 points from eight matches and sits in sixth position, while FC Khumaltar remains in tenth place with seven points.