The Indian national team has lost an International FIFA Friendly Match against Singapore at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium on Tuesday. Wim Koevermans’ team suffered a 0-2 defeat against the East Asians.
India started off well and the team led by skipper Sunil Chhetri were looking for an early goal in front of approximately 3,500 fans. The Sporting Clube de Portugal striker had the first chance for India in the very first minute, when he received a freekick from Sanju Pradhan. But Sunil failed to get control of the ball and the Singapore defence cleared the situation.
Sunil had another chance to give India the lead just five minutes later when he received a long throw-in by Gouramangi Singh. But Sunil’s attempt on target didn’t cause any problems to keeper Izwan Mahbud.
Singapore took the lead against the run of play when substitute Khairul Amri found the back of the net in the 42nd minute. Shahdan Sulaiman intercepted a poor clearance by the Indian team and set-up Amri in a perfect position to slot it home past India keeper Subrata Pal.
The hosts increased their lead minutes into the second half when Fazrul Nawaz sidefooted into the net from inside the Indian box.
The Indian team was even lucky not to concede another goal moments later as the referee denied the hosts a goal due to an offside position by “goal scorer” Fazrul Nawaz.
Wim Koevermans’ team had their difficulties to get back into the game after the early second goal minutes into the last 45 minutes of the game. Singapore played a confident style of football after the 2-0 lead and looked certain to win the match.
Koevermans brought on Robin Singh and Jewel Raja Sheikh to replace skipper Sunil Chhetri and Sanju Pradhan. Robin had his moment in the 69th minute when the young striker tested keeper Izwan Mahbud with a powerful shot from the edge of the box. But Mahbud showed his talent with a great save to keep Singapore’s two goal cushion.
Singapore were clever enough to keep the lead till the final whistle was blown and to register a 2-0 win against the Indian national team.
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International FIFA Friendly Match
at Choa Chu Kang Stadium, Singapore
SINGAPORE 2-0 INDIA
1-0 Khairul Amri (42′)
2-0 Fazrul Nawaz (49′)
Izwan Mahbud; Shaiful Esah, Baihakki Khaizan [C], Safuwan Baharudin, Juma’at Jantan; Shi Jiayi (40′ Khairul Amri), Shahdan Sulaiman (87′ Hafiz Abu Sujad), Hariss Harun, Mustafic Fahrudin (75′ Isa Halim); Aleksandar Duric (90′ Firdaus Kasman), Fazrul Nawaz (66′ Fazli Ayob)
Hyrulnizam Juma’at, Joey Sim; Shaiful Esah, Irwan Shah, Sevki Sha’ban, Daniel Bennett, Jufri Taha; Yasir Hanapi, Safirul Sulaiman; Qiu Li, Agu Casmir, Shahril Ishak, Fazrul Nawaz
1-Subrata Pal; 4-Nirmal Chettri, 3-Raju Eknath Gaikwad (65′ Gurwinder Singh), 19-Gouramangi Moirangthem Singh, 22-Syed Rahim Nabi (80′ Denzil Franco); 8-Sanju Pradhan (62′ Jewel Raja Sheikh), 12-Mehtab Hossain, 6-Lenny Rodrigues, 15-Clifford Miranda (77′ Anthony Pereira); 10-Francis Fernandes; 11-Sunil Chhetri [C] (62′ Robin Singh)
Subhasish Roy Chowdhury, Karanjit Singh; Alwyn George; Joaquim Abranches
Nagor Amir (Malaysia)
44′ Mustafic Fahrudin (Singapore)
AIFF MATCH REPORT
India went down 0-2 to Singapore in an International Friendly at the Chao Chu Kang Stadium in Singapore on Tuesday (October 16). Khairul Amri and Fazrul Nawaz scored one each for the home side in the 43rd and 49th minute respectively.
Despite conceding the odd goal in the first half, India stayed the better of the two teams in the first 45 minutes. They began with a purpose and pressed hard. The ball was switched from one flank to the other, the game slowed down when the situation needed and the ball played among themselves all throughout.
In the 9th minute, Mehtab Hossain broke into the Singapore box but rival defender Harris Harun recovered in time to scuttle Mehtab’s cross from inside the box. The very next minute, Clifford Miranda latched on a defensive lapse but Harun managed to flick his centre at the last minute to prevent Sunil Chhetri from pulling the trigger.
There’s something about the Choa Chu Kang Stadium. On the far side, you don’t have galleries; instead USD 2 million Villas stay witness. In the stands, however, the support stayed equal even as around 3000 fans turned up.
Much against the run of play, Singapore surged into the lead in the 43rd minute when Khairul Amri intercepted a clearance down the right, entered the box and placed it past an advancing Subrata Pal.
Almost immediately, India had another chance but Sanju Pradhan’s cross agonisingly missed Sunil Chhetri’s forehead.
Changing over, Singapore didn’t allow India to settle down and doubled the score in the 49th minute – Fazrul Nawaz putting it past a diving Pal.
To make matters worse, Captain Sunil Chhetri suffered a slight niggle and was eventually replaced by Robin Singh in the 62nd minute; Jewel Raja also came in for Sanju Pradhan. Three minutes later, Gurwinder Singh came in for Raju Gaikwad. Robin tried to make an impact soon but his left-footed volley from the top box went straight to the rival goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud.
With six substitutions allowed, Koevermans brought in Anthony Pereira in the 77th minute in place of Clifford Miranda and three minutes later, there was another double substitution — Joaquim Abranches replacing Mehtab Hossain and Denzil Franco coming in place of Syed Rahim Nabi in the 80th minute. The move earned more thrust and a Francis Fernandes corner was gathered well by Mahbud and another went abegging.
But it was an uphill task and despite India going all out, the Singapore defence managed to keep everything at bay till the final whistle.
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