Losing concentration at crucial junctures cost Indian U-19 girls dear as they went down 0-4 to hosts Vietnam in their second match of the AFC U-19 Women’s Championship 2017 Qualifiers at the Vietnam YFTC Field No 3, Hanoi on Friday (November 4, 2016).
Courtesy the result, India bowed out of the Championship with one point from two matches. Vietnam will take on Iran in the last league match to decide the group winner.
Much in control for the first 35 minutes, India were growing in confidence after a cautious start. But it turned out to be a different story altogether.
The first chance of the match came in the 25th minute and it was their perseverance which helped India earn it. The triangle of Hemolata, Shetty and Ratanbala combined well and laid it on for Kashmina who proved a bit too fast for her marker. Kashmina’s shot even had rival goalkeeper Tran Thi Hai Yen beaten, but it hit the post and bounced back straight to Tran. The horde of Indian attackers lurking around could only curse their luck.
Perhaps it was an indication of things to come.
Ten minutes later, Vietnam were rewarded a penalty, courtesy a needless tackle at the edge of the box. Tuyet Ngan gleefully converted from the spot.
The second goal came in the 43rd minute. With central defender Sweety Devi being treated outside, the Indian defence was extremely slow to react to a long but harmless clearance. An alert Ngan, the poacher, snatched it and banged it in as Vietnam headed to the interval with a comfortable two-goal cushion.
Changing over, it was extremely difficult to overturn a two goal deficit, especially against a side tactically as sound as Vietnam.
Nevertheless, the Indian girls came out blazing all guns and looked more dominant till the 75th minute. With Vietnam playing a high level of defence, Kashmina on a couple of occasions, sneaked in following through passes from Smiriti and Ratanbala respectively. But she stayed guilty of holding onto the ball a bit too long allowing the rival defenders to recover.
The Indians were tiring out by then and it was from the 75 minute onwards that the hosts took over. The third goal came in the 82nd minute – Thi Nu having all the time in the world to place in it from in between the central defenders; and then Ha Thi made it 4-0 in added time.
(Report & Photo courtesy: AIFF Media)