THE BLOG BY CPD FOOTBALL | The World of Indian football and beyond by Chris Punnakkattu Daniel

India U-19 team progress to Asia Champions Trophy 2015 semis

India U-19 National Team
India U-19 National Team

Photo courtesy: AIFF Media

The India U-19 National Team qualified for the semifinals of the FAM-FRENZ Asia Champions Trophy 2015 as they drew 1-1 against Malaysian club side Frenz United A on October 22, 2015 at the Hang-Tuah Stadium in Melacca, Malaysia to finish second in Group A.

The Indian colts play Japan’s Kashima Antlers next in the semifinals. The home leg is slated for October 28, 2015 in Goa.

Coming on the back of a three game winning streak, the Indian U-19 team needed just a point to progress into the latter stages of the competition. A Bidyananda Singh goal in the dying embers of the first half canceled Muhammed Maulana’s 13th minute strike as the match ended on level pegging.

However it was the home side which dominated the opening minutes of the matches as Indian custodian Sayak Barai was called into action as early as the 1st minute to deny the Malaysian opponents an early lead.

As the match transformed into an end-to-end stuff, Rakesh Oram was provided with a brilliant opportunity to open India’s goal scoring tally in the 3rd minute, but the lanky winger failed to do justice to his chance.

Four minutes later Lalramzuava’s shot was saved by the Malaysian custodian as the Indian colts started to grow in the match. However the tempo was short-lived as Frenz United A scored in the 13th minute to take a solitary goal lead against the Indian colts.

Recouping swiftly the Indian colts tried to breach the Malaysian’s fortress with their own attacks. And in the 34th minute the colts were handed a golden opportunity to level their deficit, but it went abegging as Malswamzuala failed to tap the ball home from hand-shaking distance.

The India U-19 National Team finally equalized in right in dying embers of the first half as Bidyananda blasted his chance home comfortably following a deflected Lalramzuava shot which fell into his stride, as both teams went into the tunnel at half-time on level pegging.

Changing over and the Indian colts tired to make the most of their opportunities as Frenz United dominated possession. In the 50th minute, Daniel’s shot flew whiskers over the bar. In the 63rd minute, Sayak pulled off a top draw save as he acrobatically dived to deny Frenz United A the lead.

Thereafter both teams cancelled each other out for the rest of the match and entangled in a battle for midfield as the final score-line read 1-1.

(Report & Photo courtesy AIFF Media)