What's the story?
Riding high on confidence having remained unbeaten in thirteen matches on the trot, the Indian team has become the second best defence in the Third Round of the AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers, having conceded just three goals in their five matches.
With four wins and one draw from five games, the Indian team endured a smooth path to qualify for the 2019 AFC Asian Cup.
In case you didn't know
India endured a rollicking start to its campaign with wins over the Kyrgyz Republic and Myanmar before a decimation of Macau cemented India's spot in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup competition.
When the final whistle was blown to signal the end of the clash against Macau, wild celebrations were sparked as India not only won the match but continued its unbeaten streak with the win also turning out to be the 12th continuous unbeaten fixture for India.
Heart of the Matter
While the stalemate against Myanmar in the recently concluded encounter was the highest any team scored against India in this year's qualifiers, it only went on to highlight India's dominance in defence.
India went into the Macau match without having conceded a single goal. Against Myanmar, the defence looked slightly shaky and gave away two goals.
However, in terms of comparison, the Indian team will be a proud bunch with only three goals scored against them, and are the second best defence in the Third Round of the qualifiers, with Lebanon and Bahrain. Palestine and Vietnam are the only two sides to have conceded fewer goals -- two.
Assured of a place in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup and free from national commitments, the Indian team will now split, and the players will represent various franchises in the upcoming Indian Super League, which promises to provide some mouth-watering clashes.
Given the talent pool in the Indian setup, India's qualification for the 2019 tournament comes as no surprise.Published 14 Nov 2017, 23:37 IST