India U-16s focussed on ‘getting the job done’ against Nepal

Thimphu, Sep 5 (PTI) India are just a point away from securing their berth in the SAFF U-16 Championship 2023 semi-final, but the Blue Colts’ focus remains squarely on their last Group A match against Nepal.

India began their campaign with a 1-0 victory over Bangladesh and are set to face Nepal at the Changlimithang Stadium on Wednesday.

Head coach Ishfaq Ahmed put off all talks about the possible permutations and combinations of their semi-final opponents, till the spot was actually secured.

“Yes, we have been watching all the matches of the other groups. If we top our group, we could play hosts Bhutan, and if we finish second, we will play Pakistan. I have assessed their strengths and weaknesses, but all that will come later,” said Ahmed to on the eve of the match.

“Right now, we must focus on getting the job done against Nepal.” As it currently stands, India are atop Group A with three points from one game, with a goal difference of +1, having defeated Bangladesh 1-0 in the opening game.

Meanwhile, Bangladesh have clawed their way back on the table, after defeating Nepal 1-0. A draw or a win will secure the top spot in the group for India, but a loss may make things more complicated.

While all the permutations and combinations exist, the Blue Colts are simply looking to earn three points to maintain their winning momentum.

Ahmed kept a close watch on the match between Nepal and Bangladesh and believes that the side from the Himalayan nation can pack quite the punch.

“I think they are a good side and played well against Bangladesh. They were unlucky to have lost that match,” said Ahmed.

“I expect them to put up a good fight. We only need a draw, but we will go in with a positive attitude and try to get the three points.” Over the last few days in Bhutan, the India U-16s have had a number of tough training sessions, along with some good recovery sessions as well.

Source: PTI News


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