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India U-16 hold Tajikistan in the AFC U-16 Qualifiers

AFC U-16 Championship - Q: Tajikistan U-16 v India U-16

The India U-16 national team kicked-off its AFC U-16 Championship 2014 qualifying campaign with a 1-1 draw against Tajikistan at Kuwait City’s Ali Sabah Al-Salem Stadium on Saturday.

Tajikistan took the lead in the 36th minute, when the Indian team failed to clear a corner from the left side just to find an unmarked Karomatullo Saidov in the box. Saidov put the ball past India U-16 goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh to hand his team a 1-0 lead.

India scored the equalisier in the second half, when a Tajik defender brought down Nijwm Muchahary in the box. Prosenjit Chakraborty converted the resulting penalty to make it 1-1 in the 57th minute.

The India U-16 national team was lucky not concede a late goal when Sobirdzhon Gulyakov had the chance the take advantage of a goalkeeping blunder. But Gulyakov put the ball well wide to keep the score line 1-1.

Both teams settled for a 1-1 draw in the first match of the AFC U-16 Championship Qualifying Group A. Bhutan will take on Lebanon in the second match later in the evening.

Goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh was adjudged the ‘Man of the Match’.

India U-16 head coach Goutam Ghosh’s team will take on Lebanon in their next match scheduled to take place on Wednesday.

AFC U-16 Championship 2014 – Qualifier | Group A | Ali Sabah Al-Salem Stadium, Kuwait City (Kuwait)

1-0 Karomatullo Saidov (36′)
1-1 Prosenjit Chakraborty (57′)


Tajikistan U-16
30 Behruz Khayriev – 3 Sirodzhiddin Gulmurodov, 4 Abubakar Azimov, 5 Alisher Safarov [C] – 7 Karomatullo Saidov, 8 Suhrob Muminov (84′ 19 Panshanbe Ehsoni), 10 Khudoydod Uzaqov, 11 Muhamadjon Sharipov (66′ 14 Sobirdzhon Gulyakov), 18 Hasan Muhammadjoni – 9 Rustam Tolibov, 26 Sukhrob Mirozoev

Unused Subs
1 Shahrom Ismoilov, 2 Firuz Rizomov, 6 Davlatmir Tabrezi, 12 Saidjon Sharipov, 16 Firuz Bekmurodov, 17 Khokimdzhon Khasanov, 20 Himatullo Malodustov, 21 Somon Mavlonov, 22 Ilhomjon Beridialiev, 25 Jamshed Maksumov

India U-16
1 Moirangthem Dheeraj Singh – 2 Moirangthem Jayananda Singh, 3 Jerry Lalrinzuala [C], 5 Prosenjit Chakraborty (88′ 28 Amey Ranawade), 22 Amit Tudu – 8 Kyntiew Kharlukhi, 14 Anirudh Thapa, 18 Deependra Singh Negi (76′ 6 Bodo Baoringdao), 27 Hoble Kapil Satish (46′ 17 Krishna Pandit) – 15 Laishram Bedashwor Singh, 38 Nijwm Muchahary

Unused Subs
4 Thongam Kishan Singh, 9 Surya Tirkey, 12 Subrata Das, 19 Nuruddin, 21 Edmund Lalrindika, 25 Anuj Kumar, 30 Aaron Franklin Rodrigues, 31 Bugde Vineet Bikas, 35 Krishanu Santra


Yellow Cards
39′ Moirangthem Jayananda Singh (India)
77′ Sukhrob Mirozoev (Tajikistan)

Yellow-Red Cards

Red Cards



Assistant Referees

Fourth Official

Match Commissioner
Shah Ismail (Maldives)

AIFF Match Report

A spirited India were held to a 1-1 draw by Tajikistan in their first match of the 2013 AFC U-16 Qualifiers at the Ali Sabah Al-Salem Stadium in Kuwait City on Saturday (September 21). Prosenjit Chakraborty converted from the spot in the 56th minute after Saidov Karomatullo had put Tajikistan in the lead in the 36th minute.

Represented by All India Football Federation’s Regional Academy boys, the Indian colts took some time to settle down. Once they did, they dominated, penetrated and forced Tajikistan to play second fiddle.

But as Head Coach Goutam Ghosh maintained at the Post Match Press Conference, “Our boys can play better.”

“We played very well in the second half and created a lot of opportunities from which we could score. But this was our first match and we will try to rectify on our mistakes,” he stated.

The character on display was commendable indeed. It was the first match of the AFC Championship and the first International match for the bunch. But they were not overawed by the occasion. Down by a first-half goal the boys came back strongly forcing one to ponder as to why they couldn’t garner full points.

Post the Tajikistan goal which was pushed in by Saidov off a melee following a corner, it was all India in the remaining part of the first half and the first 25 minutes of the second half. But Tajikistan managed to hold on. Add to that rival Goalkeeper Khayriev Behruz’s reflexes, India were forced to split points.

The turnaround started from the 37th minute. India’s sudden burst unsettled the sturdy Tajik boys, who till the 36th minute looked a bit more in control than the Indians. In the 44th minute, Anirudh Thapa’s touch off a Jerry Lalrinzuala free-kick hit the post and went wide. A series of corners followed. But the ball wasn’t just destined to go in. It was the right impetus which India needed prior to the interval.

And when they took the field in second half, the colts began with a bang. Krishna Pandit replaced Kapil Hoble and in the very first minute, Muchahary’s shot was saved by a diving Khayriev.

India kept up the pressure and almost equalised in the 47th minute but this time, a Dependra Negi header off a Jerry Lalrinzuala corner was again denied by an alert Khayriev.

The equalizer seemed inevitable and it eventually came in the 56th minute. Nijwm sidestepped Azimov Abubark only to be brought down by the latter inside the box. Prosenjit Chakraborty gleefully converted from the spot.

India should have gained the lead in the 67th minute when Prosenjit lobbed it over Khayriev who was out of position. But it missed by a whisker.

Bodo who was introduced in place of Negi was by then combining well with Nijwm on the right flank much to the frustration of Tajikistan — so much so, that in the 77th minute, Mirzoev was yellow carded for bringing down Kharlukhi Kyntiewshaphrang.

In the 81st minute, Tajikistan had another close shave when Anirudh’s shot was saved at the right moment by rival captain Safarov Alisher inside the box.

However, Tajikistan were off the blocks faster in the first half and had seized the initiative early. Despite the possession, nevertheless, they were not able to break free. The two Central Defenders along with the two wing-backs kept them at bay. The early thrust did earn Tajikistan quote a few corners but they weren’t able to leave a mark.

As the game progressed, India regrouped. They stressed on keeping possession and switched it from one flank to the other. And once they lost the ball, they managed to hold their rivals only to snatch it back.

In the 24th minute, Nijwm Muchahary played a quick one-two with Bedashwor Laishram but the latter’s shot deflected off rival Captain Saidov Karomatullo.

Tajikistan’s goal came in the 26th minute when Saidov tapped it in between a jungle of legs following a corner down the far end. Uzaqov Khudoydod and Tolibov Rustam, with their interchanging, did keep the Indian defence busy and at times looked threatening. But the Indian defenders, all below 15, recovered fast to deny them.