Jordan 2 - 1 India: 5 Hits and Flops as Stephen Constantine's men lose friendly
- Debutant Nishu's goal was not good enough for India to draw level as they slumped to Jordan away from home
The trip to Jordan was hectic for the Indians as their flights were delayed due to floods in the Middle-East. Seven of the 22 players went through a 32-hour ordeal before landing at Amman on Friday night, barely a day before the game. The game itself was thrown into doubt due to these calamities but the Jordan FA decided to go ahead with the match.
Stephen Constantine did not start the seven players who were yet to gain match fitness after the long journey. Anirudh Thapa started as the sole striker upfront and Jerry Lalrinzuala operated in an abnormal position through the attacking flanks on the left side.
The hosts had a penalty very early in the game but Gurpreet Singh Sandhu pulled off an excellent save to deny Jordan. Gurpreet dived the right way and got his fingertips to drift the spot-kick by Khalil Baniateyah, who tried to slot the ball hard into the bottom-left.
However, Gurpreet committed a horrendous mistake when the opposition goalkeeper Amer Shafi hoofed the ball up to play the attacker. A momentary lapse of judgment by Gurpreet saw the ball bounce at the edge of the box and land at the back of the net.
Jordan could have taken a two-goal lead going into the interval, but they failed to make the most of it. Fast forward, thirteen minutes into the second half, the hosts eventually made it 2-0 on the counter, thanks to a great team goal which was put in the back of the net by Ehsan Haddad. Three minutes later, Nishu Kumar pulled one back for the visitors, but it turned out to be a consolation goal. The game ended in a 2-1 defeat to India.
In this piece, we look at the 5 hits and flops from the game between Jordan and India.
#1 Hit: Yaseen Al-Bakhit
Yaseen Al-Bakhit started in the right wing for Jordan. The 29-year-old was a constant threat for India as he made a couple of runs past Pritam Kotal and Salam Ranjan Singh, who tried to shield the right flanks by providing support to the right-back. However, it was the Jordan International who dominated throughout the game.
Bakhit won the ball back for the second goal, leading to the counter-attack that led to the neat finish by Haddad. His speed, incisive passing and dribbling made life tough for Kotal. There were instances where he could have done better in the final third, but he stood out for the hosts by proving to be the creative fulcrum.