After an underwhelming 1-1 draw against Bangladesh to start their SAFF Championship campaign, India falter yet again against Sri Lanka. A soulless performance against a team that is ranked 205th in the FIFA rankings as the Blue Tigers failed to find the target in a drab 0-0 draw.
The Indian team looked lethargic in their approach and that desire was simply missing. The Blue Tigers did not create enough chances and also missed the ones they got. Liston Colaco had the easiest chance of the game where he squandered an open header. Farukh Choudhury found the back of the net in the second half from a rebound but the goal was cancelled due to Subhashis Bose’s foul earlier in the play. The ATK Mohun Bagan defender also missed a golden opportunity to break the deadlock.
With two consecutive draws, India needs to pull up their socks as they are four points behind leaders Nepal. Indian will play them next and Igor Stimac highlighted that it is of prime importance to win the next match against Nepal to get back in the fray for the finals of the SAFF Championship.
But India’s goalscoring woes was once again pointed out by their Croatian tactician. He explained how the Blue Tigers controlled the game and did everything right but could not find the target against the Golden Army. But on the other hand, Stimac is happy with the progress that his team has made in terms of holding possession and passing patterns.
“After the first two games, the only thing missing is goals,” said Stimac. “We were much better team than Bangladesh. Even today, it was only one team on the pitch, India. So, we are dominating these games. we controlled both of our matches.”
Stimac criticised how Sri Lanka did not play football and defended with 11 players throughout the match. He added, “Sri Lanka played much better in the first two games. You could see they are playing and doing something football-wise. But, today they could do nothing,” he pointed out. “So, we controlled the game well, same as against Bangladesh. Ball possession is okay and shots on target is fine, only goals are missing,” added Stimac, who scored two goals in Croatia’s FIFA U-20 World Cup win in 1987. “I cannot go there and score goals, players need to do that.”
India will next face Nepal in a must-win clash on October 10.