India were handed their second defeat in five days when they were beaten away by Guam in the second World Cup Qualifier.
The visitors retained the starting 11 from the first match in which they were praised for their performance against Oman. But they went 1-0 down in the first half when McDonald headed in a Ryan Guy throw in.
In the second half, Guam dominated even more and they extended their lead when Nicklaw scored the second. Chhetri scored with the last touch of the game as India pulled a goal back, but that was not nearly enough.
Here are the player ratings from the match:
Subrata Pal – 4/10
Could do nothing about the two goals. His handling was decent throughout the match, but it was a game to forget for the shot-stopper.
Rino Anto – 4/10
He got an assist at the end but was nowhere close to the performance that India need if they want to reach the World Cup.
Dhanachandra Singh – 3/10
Was ineffective in defence as he lost his player more than once. Thrown into the first XI due to the injury picked up by Jhingan, Singh is still coming to terms playing with Mondal.
Arnab Mondal – 4/10
Was at fault for the first goal as he was late to sense the danger posed by McDonald. He did make a brilliant tackle in the first half when the striker was through one-on-one with the keeper. But as India’s most experienced player in defence, much more is expected from the 25-year-old.
Fanai Lalchhuanmawia – 4/10
After a stellar season with Bengaluru, the expectations were high from the left-back from Mizoram. He did well defensively but was virtually absent in attack, and if India want to stick to their commitment of playing attacking football, Mawia will have to provide more.
Jackichand Singh – 4/10
Apart from a few tricks, the I-League player of the season did nothing to impact the match. He was taken off after 67 minutes, having played a very indifferent game.
Eugenson Lyngdoh – 3/10
Lyngdoh was perhaps the most disappointing player on the pitch. He picked up an early booking and after a few more fouls Constantine made the right call to take him off at half-time. His usual dead-ball abilities were lost in the humidity of the island.
Sehnaj Singh – 4/10
He was virtually invisible for most of the first half, doing more defensive work than actually creating chances. He was taken off at half-time as Constantine tried to change the momentum of the game.
Vineeth – 4/10
Vineeth got India’s first shot on target from 30 yards with a tame shot that the keeper gathered easily. But on the whole it was another indifferent performance by Vineeth, who is one player who has to raise his game to stay in the team.
Robin Singh – 4/10
Robin has not been able to recreate his domestic form for the national team. In his 18 appearances for the national team, he has only scored 1 goal. The trend continued against Guam as he was unable to make a positive contribution. He had a glorious chance to reduce the deficit late in the second half but instead of heading the ball in he chose to chest the ball towards goal.
Sunil Chhetri – 5/10
Chhetri got his customary goal from the last touch of the match with a beautiful header into the top corner. The Indian captain for the game was marked out of the action by the Guam players as he hardly had any meaningful contributions today. He did work tirelessly throughout though.
Cavin Lobo – 5/10
He came on in the second half to replace Sehnaj Singh. He did well offensively but left Ganesh with a lot of work to do in midfield. Tried his luck from distance but could not come up with a telling hit.
Dhanpal Ganesh – 5/10
He came on in place of Lyngdoh at the beginning of the second half. Passed the ball around well but was unable to create too much offensively. Towards the end, he was overrun in midfield as the Indian team searched for a goal.
Jeje Lalpekhlua – 5/10
He replaced Jackichand in the 68th minute of the game. He added some pace to the team but apart from that could not create much. Had a great chance towards the end when he found himself free in the box, but headed the ball right at the keeper.
Stephen Constantine – 3/10
Not many will disagree that Constantine has not been with the team for a long period of time and that the has not had enough matches to create a philosophy, but the players looked dazed and confused against Guam.
They look to play the ball long towards Robin Singh at every opportunity they get, even though Constantine specifically said after the Oman game that he did not want to play that brand of football. He needs to set up one captain and the AIFF need to get him a few friendlies or India might even miss out on the 2019 Asian Cup.
Doug Herrick – 6/10
Had nothing to do in the first half and very little in the second. Looked confident whenever called upon. Could not do much with the Chhetri goal as it was right in the corner.
Alexander Lee – 7/10
A livewire throughout the game. Was brilliant offensively and very effective in defence. The only negative of the game for him would be the booking he collected for time wasting.
Travis Nicklaw – 8/10
Missed a free header in the second half but made up for it when he scored the second goal of the game with a well hit shot from just inside the box. He did well to hold off Arnab Mondal and unleashed a shot that Subrata Pal could only see go into the net.
Matt Grimes – 8/10
The centre-back was excellent against Chhetri and Robin Singh. He snuffed out attacks even before they developed. A lapse of concentration got India a goal, which they did not really deserve.
Jason Cunliffe – 9/10
Was excellent throughout both offensively and defensively. Passed the ball around really well and made sure Guam controlled the match from the first whistle to the last.
Ryan Guy – 8/10
The Guamanian Rory Delap, who can cross the ball as well, had a stellar game. It was from his long throw-in that Guam took the lead in the first half.
Brandon McDonald – 8/10
Scored the goal that finally handed Guam the advantage in the match. McDonald was under tremendous pressure with three defenders surrounding him, but he rose highest when it actually mattered.
Shaun Nicklaw – 7/10
Put in a tremendous shift for the entire 90 minutes. Helped out in defence as well as in attack.
A.J. Delagarza – 7/10
The LA Galaxy star was excellent as he kept Chhetri and Robin Singh quiet throughout the game.
Shane Malcolm – 7/10
Could have been the hero when the ball was put on a plate for him but he fluffed his shot from 5 yards. He was a willing runner throughout the game and was substituted towards the end to bring on fresh legs.
Ian Mariano – N/A
Was brought on to see out the match.
Dylan Naputi – N/A
Did not play enough to make a difference.
Gary White (Coach) – 8/10
Gary White set up his team brilliantly, neutralizing the impact of India’s main threat Sunil Chhetri. His team looked ready for the challenge and came out with flying colours. India could not cope with their movement and the pace at which they played throughout the 90 minutes.