Nepal created two good chances early in the half, but in the first 45 minutes everything remained the same. Then, just after one hour of play, India snatched victory when Sunil Chhetri scored from close range to bring his international tally to 91 goals. Naorem Mahesh Singh, who scored India’s second goal, teamed up with Sahal Abdul Samad on the right and then put the ball into the center of the field, and Chhetri did the rest without the slightest hint of trouble.
SAFF Championship: After defeats to Nepal and Pakistan, Kuwait is not looking for big feats against India
Shortly after the strike, India introduced two substitute players, bringing in defensive midfielder Jixon Singh and winger Lallianzuala Chhangte. After their arrival, India restored the normal play that was expected of them, as Nepal struggled for most of the remainder of the second half.
Speaking to reporters after the match, Jixon noted Chhetri’s brilliant play in front of goal. He helps our national team, every time he scores a goal, I think it calms us down. And I hope he keeps it up, he’s almost scored 100 goals already, he said.
Although India has already secured a spot in the semifinals, the Blue Tigers will face Kuwait in the last match of the group, the winner of which will take first place in Group A. Kuwait has scored seven goals in two matches (3-1 against Nepal, 4-0 against Pakistan) and poses a good problem for the Indian team, which had to work hard to cope with Nepal’s intense pressure.
Although Jixon admits that the game against Kuwait will be more difficult than against India’s previous two opponents, he assured that the team is confident of a positive result.
They’re a much stronger team than we’ve faced in the last two matches and it’s not just me, I think everybody has to give their best. If we stick to our plan and be disciplined, we will stop them. We can win, he said.