It was interesting to watch the new football league today. The game was played between established club Yeedzin FC and the youngsters of Ugyen Academy. It was played on the brand new artificial turf at Changlimithang and the shiny new pitch with the crisp white lines symbolized the new start that the Bhutan Football Federation is making with its brand new league. The air was different, a little expectant, and the spectators a bit uncertain about what exactly to expect. Nevertheless, it was positive with more and more spectators strolling in throughout the game. A good sign. Now it remains to be seen how success the BFF is in promoting the sport and generating excitement.

The game itself looked a bit different compared to when it was played on natural grass. The ball did not bounce so high but seemed a bit slow. Yeedzin dominated in the first half with a lot of the pressure in the Ugyen half. However, the Ugyen boys showed class with good passes and anticipation and were successful in making several attempts at the Yeedzin post.

In the second half there was more of the same, though the Ugyen boys seems to tire a little bit making several errors. These errors resulted in 3 or 4 close calls at their goal with the goalkeeper keeping the ball out using a combination of goalkeeping skills and a lot of luck! However, luck finally ran out and the Yeedzin forward was finally able to capitalize with a goal.

Yeedzin successfully kept the Ugyen offense at bay despite a regular onslaught. At one point, the spectators noticed a slightly ‘older’ looking student getting off the Ugyen bench. It turned out to be the coach of the Ugyen team. Despite his inability to sprint, his entry did make a difference with some better passing in the Ugyen offense. At literally the 89th minute, a good combination of passing led the ball right to the goal mouth and Ugyen’s industrious No.7 was finally able to slot in the equalizer. The game ended 1-1 much to the disappointment of Yeedzin FC.

The game was of particular interest for Pelkhil School with 3 former and current students playing in the game. Playing for Yeedzin FC was Sonam Yoezer (class XI). His accurately placed through ball led to the first goal by Yeedzin. Former student Kinley Tenzin sat on the bench also for Yeedzin. Former student Ngawang also played the No.12 shirt for Ugyen Academy FC.


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