India U-16 team defeats Hoffenheim U-16 in a practice match
The Indian U-16 national football team continued on its winning ways. Currently in Germany as a part of their European exposure tour, the Indian boys put on an impressive display to overcome the U-16 team of Bundesliga side TSG Hoffenheim.
In a game played against the Germans 2-1 at the end of ninety minutes which was played in three periods of thirty minutes each. 5-minute intervals were allotted in the middle of each period.
The Indian boys held the Germans to a stalemate in the opening period and it looked to be going direction in the second period as well. That’s when Hoffenheim decided to change course and bring on a whole new set of players at the 45-minute mark of the game.
It was only three minutes later that the game saw its first goal as India struck first. Sanjeev’s sweet strike from a free kick 18 yards out was sweetly curled into the net with the Hoffenheim goalkeeper left hapless and without a prayer.
The Germans, however, took the game by the scruff following the visitors strike and enjoyed the majority of possession thereafter. However, the young Indian colts’ defence stuck together and denied the hosts any clear-cut goalscoring opportunity. However, Hoffenheim struck late in the 81st minute to make the scores equal.
However, the Indian boys didn’t lie back and had the final say in the encounter. A tremendous run from young Boris Singh saw the youngster dribble past three and lay it for Aman Chhetri. As the defence closed down on the latter, the young lad produced a sublime dummy catching the Germans off guard.
The majestic piece of skill from the youngster paid off as the ball rolled to Komal Thatal who made no mistake to slot the ball home for which turned out to be the winner.
This is their second victory with a space of a few days. The Indian boys had outclassed a Saarlandauswahl U-18 team 5-0 on Thursday. The Indian had also visited Norway late last month, where they played a couple of games as well, winning and losing one each.
India is set to host the FIFA U-17 World Cup next year and the AIFF is leaving no stone unturned to put up a good show not only as hosts but also with a team that makes the country proud. The U-16 squad which will graduate to the U-17 level next is currently touring Germany playing a handful of friendly games to prepare for the upcoming trial of the World Cup.
Nicolai Adams, the current coach of the young bunch hopes that this exposure will help them deliver their best performance in next year’s tournament.