Playing in their maiden FIFA tournament, India on Friday put up a spirited performance against their much superior rivals United States of America (USA) before going down 0-3 in the opening match of the FIFA U-17 World Cup played at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi.
USA captain Josh Sargent scored the first goal in the 30th minute to give his side a lead followed by goals of Chris Dunkin (51st) and Andrew Carleton (84th) in the second half of the game. The scoreline for USA would have looked even better, had it not been for some impressive saves by Moirangthem Dheeraj Singh. India did not get many chances to score as US were in attacking mode throughout the match pushing the Indian team into their own half. Komal Thatal and Ningthoinganba Meetei made a few good moves from the right and left flanks, but failed to capitalise on them.
Despite the defeat, the team was hailed by people on social media for managing to compete with USA. The crowd too stood behind the team cheering their every move to boost the confidence. Indian team even got a standing ovation from the fans for their fighting performance.
“It was a fantastic ambiance. I would like to thank the supporters for coming out in such numbers and we were truly overwhelmed by the support we received today,” Indian coach Luis Norton de Matos said after his side’s first ever World Cup game. India will clash with Columbia at Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi on Monday in their next FIFA U-17 World Cup encounter.
Here is how people on micro-blogging site Twitter reacted to India team’s performance:
India at #FIFAU17WC is like a baby learning to walk. Will stumble & fall but will run in future only if we hold its hands now. Needs support
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) October 6, 2017
Full Time:USA 3 – 0 India🇮🇳
— Sir Ravindra Jadeja (@SirJadeja) October 6, 2017
Boys played their heart out and went all guns blazing to put up a spirited fight against higher ranked and superior US.#FIFAU17WC
— Ritesh (@IamRitzV) October 7, 2017
— Rajyavardhan Rathore (@Ra_THORe) October 6, 2017