AFC Asian Cup 2019: 3 Reasons why India lost to Bahrain
#1 Stephen Constantine and his wasteful strategy
By the time you read this article, you would already know the fate of Stephen Constantine. Indian coach has resigned from his position immediately after the match. Honestly, he had to.
India has improved so many things under him. From 173 to 97 in the ranking is not a mean achievement.
Even, two of India’s opponents in the Asian Cup were under them in the rankings. Also, the country has seen a large pool of youngsters coming out wearing the national jersey in the past four years.
But Constantine has made this Indian team look like a Ferrari, but put the speed limit on 40 kmph.
India have earned praise from all over the world with their performance against Thailand. A 4-1 thrashing of team technically superior to them showed India are no travelers this time around.
However, they made themselves look like a traveler in their last match and it was solely because of their British coach.
The inclusion of Rowllin Borges in the starting line-up in place of Anirudh Thapa ensured the ultra-defensive strategy of the coach. Constantine wanted to lock all the gates that lead to his team’s goal.
India was not playing in their usual self from the first minute. They were concentrating more on the defence rather than making their usual counter attack.
Udanta Singh, Halicharan Narzary and of course Sunil Chhetri had no role to play for a major part in the second half.
Udanta, to make his presence visible, was coming down along with Chhetri to help the team in defence.
He made one perfect tackle within the box in the second half and we have to rub our eyes for once to see it was done by the Manipuri winger.
You are not allowed to deploy ‘park the bus’ strategy in competitive tournaments like this and India suffered what was an expected outcome.