SAFF Championship 2013: India go through to the Semis despite humiliating defeat to Nepal

India qualify for the semi's despite a 2-1 loss to Nepal
SAFF Championship 2013
Nepal 2-1 India
Nepal: Anil Gurung(70th), Jumanu Rai(81st)
India: Syed Rahim Nabi(90+2nd)

From Bad to Worse, Indian football's current condition is moving in exactly the opposite direction. A country like India who were expected to dominate the tournament played by SAFF countries have somehow managed to put themselves in a situation where its embarrassing for the spectators watching their team play such a brand of game which lacks any meaning. Despite making two changes in the starting XI with the positive inclusion of Izumi Arata and Rahim Nabi, Team India still seems to have more faith on English brand of football with full backs and wingers aimlessly trying to flood crosses to the box. Nepal and India very much played at the same level and it was Nepal who seemed to have some purpose while going forward. A dangerously floated free-kick was completely misjudged by Subrata Pal as he rushed forward and completely missed the ball, leaving Anil Gurung alone to tap it in on the rebound in the 70th minute to make the scoreline 1-0. A high-tempo counter attack saw Nepal grab a 2-0 lead much to the delight of their crowd. A superb run down the left followed by a pin point grounded cross saw Jumanu Rai nudge it past a helpless Subrata Pal, who had to watch the ball rolling to the net. India however got a consolation goal in the dying minutes of the game through an acrobatic effort from Syed Rahim Nabi who was given a first start in the SAFF championship 2013 campaign by Wim Koevermans. The goal was not enough though as Nepal deservingly went on to top the group while India thanks to Pakistan's win over Bangladesh went through to the semi finals.

Though India and Pakistan were equal on points but India went through with better head-to-head record as they had beaten Pakistan in their first match. India will play Maldives or Afghanistan in the Semi-finals but one must wonder how Indian team would perform if they face either of these two sides.
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About Debraj Banerjee

Hi, I am Debraj Banerjee from Adra, West Bengal. A keen follower of Indian football and always an optimist that the game will get the recognition it truely deserves. What we ask from you is your support and one day the dream might turn true. Fingers crossed for Indian football. Cheers!

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