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FIFA U-17 World Cup, India vs Colombia: Will play to win - Luis Norton de Matos

Luis Norton de Matos is confident of India’s good show in their second game of the FIFA U-17 World Cup against Colombia.

fifa u17 world cup 2017 Updated: Oct 09, 2017 09:09 IST
Sayan Ghosh
Sayan Ghosh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
FIFA U-17 World Cup,FIFA U-17 World Cup 2017,India vs Colombia
Luis Norton de Matos-coached India will take on Colombia in their second game of the FIFA U-17 World Cup on Monday. (Twitter/ M-News info‏ )

The Indian football team went into their first ever FIFA U-17 World Cup encounter with a lot of hope and enthusiasm on Friday, but the result was not what they would have hoped for.

The hosts were thoroughly outplayed by the Americans and though there were some signs of a fightback, the final scoreline read 3-0 in favour of the visitors. But coach Luis Norton de Matos is not ready to give up on his team and has said the loss against USA will be a huge learning moment for the team.

(Read | FIFA U-17 World Cup: India eye improved showing against Colombia)

“The team has already played against USA which had players like (Josh) Sargent who have excelled at the U-20 level and that is an experience that will help us in the upcoming matches. The match was an indication that we are capable of holding our own against superior sides and the team will take lessons from the defeat and try to rectify their mistakes,” Matos told the media.

The next opponent in India’s way are Latin American heavyweights Colombia, who defeated by Ghana in their opening game and Matos promised his boys will be looking for a result when they take the field on Monday.

(Read | FIFA U-17 World Cup: Fans go missing in ‘sold out’ Kochi and Goa)

“I would like to win. But, I believe that if you can’t win, you should try to draw. As a coach, I never want to lose and my team will surely fight for a result ,” Matos said.

The USA game was a rude wake-up call for the hosts as the opponents were superior in every department and Colombia will also be no different. Despite losing against Ghana, they were able to maintain 56% possession and Matos was quick to accept that they are the better team.

(Read | FIFA U-17 World Cup: Germany U-17 team visits Ashram in Goa after Costa Rica win)

“The place where India is lacking against Colombia is match practice. Some of the Colombian players play in their country’s top league and with so little matches under our belt, the team is taking a lot more time to gel together as an unit,” he said.

“I am aware of the difference in quality between the two teams, but that is no reason for not trying. The players fought hard against USA and the match against Colombia will be no different,” he added.

Boris Singh will most likely be the only change for India after the right-back missed their game against USA due to suspension. He will replace Rahul Kannoly in the starting XI and his main role will be to stop the threat of Colombian midfielder Leandro Campaz down the left flank.

First Published: Oct 09, 2017 08:40 IST