Indian-origin duo guides team to crushing win over Sevilla
Abhinav John was among the game's best players.
Two Indian-origin youngsters, Zayed bin Waleed and Abhinav John, played their part in du LaLiga High Performance Centre's (HPC) 4-1 win over Sevilla Under-16s. Both Zayed and John were part of the Under-16s team that took to the field yesterday.
du LaLiga HPC U16s lost their first competitive match against Cadiz but they were not to be denied again. They romped past Sevilla as striker Mehdi Elkhamlichi scored a hat-trick.
Both the Indian-origin players were stationed at the heart of midfield for du LaLiga HPC and it was the lanky John who was involved in everything good his team produced in attack. John scored the fourth goal of the game to round off the 4-1 win with a 25-metre strike. du LaLiga HPC took the lead early in the first half before Sevilla equalised. Elkhamlichi completed his hat-trick in the second half before John scored the clincher.
While John is only 13 years old, Zayed is a 15-year-old midfielder. Both players have been impressive performers for their team, which is based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
According to sources close to the player, both John and Zayed are Indian passport holders and therefore, are eligible to play for India. Having been training at the state-of-the-art facilities at du LaLiga HPC, they have received coaching from some of the best trainers from La Liga, the top division league in Spain.
Zayed has, in the past, been linked with the Indian Under-16 team and still harbours dreams of representing the Colts. The midfielder has the skillset to succeed in his position and he wouldn't look out of place in the India U-16s team, who are set to play Iraq, Palestine and Nepal in the AFC U-16 Championship 2018 qualifiers next month.The 15-year-old is keen to link up with the Indian team given his eligibility.
Having featured in a team that beat Sevilla, one of the premier Spanish clubs, albeit being an age-group game, Zayed, who has also scored against youth teams of Paris Saint-Germain, could be an asset to the Indian team should his wish of representing the national team be fulfilled.
You can read the match report here.