India rout Puerto Rico 4-1 in International Friendly at Mumbai

India hammer Puerto Rico 4-1 at Andheri Sports Complex, Mumbai
International Friendly
Andheri Sports Complex, Mumbai
India 4-1 Puerto Rico
India: Narayan Das(18th), Sunil Chhetri(26th), Jeje Lalpekhlua(34th), Jackichand Singh(58th)
Puerto Rico: Emanuel Sanchez(8th)

A historical match at the Andheri Sports Complex witnessed a rampant Team India put the visiting Puerto Rico team to the sword. A 4-1 victory for the Blue Tigers which saw them dominate the game with venom and putting the clinical touches at regular intervals. Goals from Narayan Das, Sunil Chhetri, Jeje Lalpekhlua in the first half followed by one more from Jackichand Singh after the interval meant that team India, ranked 152nd in the world FIFA ranking ladder out performed a 114th ranked Puerto Rican side.

Sunil Chhetri
Sunil Chhetri was the star performer for
Team India against Puerto Rico
The game did not start on the perfect note for Team India as Jackichand Singh tripped Elliot Velez inside the box to concede an early penalty. Emmanuel Sanchez sent Gurpreet the wrong way to give the visitors the lead. The goal brought a positive response from the Blue Tigers as they responded back in style with Sunil Chhetri being at the heart of everything. His freekick in the 18th minute struck the woodwork only to find Narayan Das, whose shot beat the goalkeeper to give the equalizer to Team India. With the ferocious backing of the Mumbai crowd India surged ahead and the man was once again Sunil Chhetri whose freekick found the back of the net after hitting the inside of the post. Eight minutes later, Sunil Chhetri turned provider after a swift passing move from the Blue Tigers saw an unmarked Jeje head the ball to the net to give India a comfortable 3-1 lead. Between the two Indian goals, skipper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu made a good save to deny a Puerto Rican goal.

Midfielders Pronoy Halder and Bikash Jairu were substituted post the lemon break with Rowlin Borges and Holicharan Narzary coming in. The midfield found more stability for the home team and chances became more open. Michael Ramos's solo run almost reduced the deficit but his shot struck the post. The final goal of the game came in the 57th minute when Jeje's cross taking a touch off Lyngdoh only to find Jackichand at the far post to provide a diving finish. India lead 4-1 and the game looked all but over as Stephen Constantine made a number of changes. Sumeet Passi, Seityasen Singh, Daniel Lalhlimpuia and Germanpreet Singh came in. Sumeet Passi had some glorious chances to extend the lead but he left his finishing boots elsewhere.

It was a commanding performance from Stephen Constantine's men and the win would boost their confidence. One could only hope that Team India gets more such International friendlies to give a push to their ranking points which is currently lacking.
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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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