Playing in their maiden Federation Internationale de Football Association 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 Federation Internationale de Football Association U-17 World Cup played at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi.
"It was a tough game for us". Once the U-17 World Cup concludes, India will turn its attention to winning the bid for the U-20 World Cup two years later. Acosta can be streaky but he made a strong case as to why he should start in the No. 10 position when the games become a lot harder after today. When they attacked, our backline did well in getting back and defending. "We will also have to compete against the crowd who would be cheering for the hosts", he said.
The US attacking trio of Sargent, Tim Weah and Ayo Akinola kept the Indian defence on tenterhooks.
"I believe, their speed can be cancelled out if we focus more on our positioning". It was a big occasion, the first time we played in front of 45, or was it 60 thousand? "I think we can play much better", USA coach John Hackworth said. "We can't make any mistake and we have to keep a good pressure on them throughout", he added.
Acosta was great off the benchIn the second half, John Hackworth brought on George Acosta in the midfield and the team followed better offensively. IN the first 20 minutes, both the teams got off to a slow starting, with some of the United States of America players aiming for a shot on target, but failing. "We have not met him for a long time", India captain Amarjit Singh's elder brother, Umakanta, told.
The U.S. outshot India 19-8 and leads Group D on goal difference over Ghana, which opened with a 1-0 win over Colombia.More news: Mika Brzezinski 'can't go forward' with Weinstein book deal
"We had a nervy start against USA".
30': Sergeant gives U.S. lead with a penalty goal. To go along with their sore bodies, the brutal lesson they had received on their introduction to world level competition would also have been fresh on their minds, even as they prepared for their second match against Colombia on Monday. They would have learnt how to play before such an unbelievable crowd, which is also an important learning process for them.
"USA played seven worldwide games in the last two months as part of preparations". Even Sunil Chhetri has never played in the World Cup.
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For those Indians who grew up in the 1990s, IM Vijayan remains the most talented and skillful footballer of his generation. They looked pretty sharp side and can break out of the group by playing consistently.