India vs UAE Football — India succumbs tamely to superior UAE
India go down 6-0 against UAE in their second international friendly in four days in what was a disappointing performance from the Blue Tigers.
India went down 6-0 to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in their second and final international friendly encounter in Dubai on Monday. After a steady start from the Blue Tigers, the UAE side took the lead through their star of the night Ali Mabkhout who was a constant nuisance throughout the 90 minutes for the Indian defence.
The Al Jazeera FC player scored a brilliant hat-trick while further goals from Khalil Ibrahim, Fabio Lima and Sebastian Tagliabue added to the scoreline to make it a comprehensive victory for the middle eastern nation. In what was a night to forget for Team India, the boys never looked like they could breach UAE's defence and managed a meagre two shots on target in the whole match.
On the other end of the pitch, the partnership between Adil Khan and Mashoor Shereef rarely inspired confidence while Pritam Kotal and Akash Mishra on either side of them could also do very little to stop the onslaught from Mabkhout and company. The entire defence looked ill at ease and off the pace compared to their middle-eastern counterparts.
At half-time, the score was a respectable 2-0 and it looked like India could mount a comeback like they did against Oman. However, changes in the half time did little to thwart UAE's impetus. The likes of Ishan Pandita, Ashique Kuruniyan and Hitesh Sharma never really got into the game. Another one of the substitutes, Raynier Fernandes, was at fault for the fourth goal when he got easily dispossessed in midfield.
That literally summed up India's performance tonight and it remains to be seen what Igor Stimac does differently before more important assignments, in the form of World Cup qualifiers, come around. Till then, this has to be a learning experience for the youngsters in the side who still have a long way to go before establishing themselves in the national side.