FIFA U-17 World Cup: Iraq coach dedicates win over Chile to people back home
Iraq defeated Chile 3-0 to clinch their first win of the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup. Continuity was the key to the team’s success, said Iraq coach Qahtan Chitheer.Updated: Oct 12, 2017 11:15 IST
Iraq coach Qahtan Chitheer said Wednesday’s 3-0 victory over Chile is dedicated to the people of his country.
“We are a strong team, we are the Asian champions. We had a good game against Mexico and improved on it against Chile,” he said.
Success from togetherness
Continuity has been the key to this team’s success. “We have been together for two-three years and even at the under-17 level, tactics are very important. It is important that players know their responsibilities. Against Mexico, we played a long-ball game trying to use Dawood’s speed. Today, we played a short passing game. Executing this kind of change is only possible through practice and staying together,” said Chitheer.
And it was not just about his team that Chitheer said this. “Iran too have a strong team and have been together for two-three years. These players will be playing the under-19 qualifications next month,” said Chitheer.
Coincidentally, India too are mulling a similar plan with regard to their AFC under-19 qualifiers.
Chitheer refused to talk about Dawood apart from saying he is talented. “We play as a team.” Dawood though is the team’s designated penalty- taker, he said.
Asked why then there seemed to be some confusion about who would take the second-half stoppage-time penalty, the coach said: “They are young and wanted to score and give their folks back home a reason to celebrate.”
Dawood thanks medical staff
Dawood too attributed this momentous win, their first in the FIFA U-17 World Cup, to collective effort. “We wanted three points and wanted it for the Iraqi people,” he said.
Dawood also thanked the team’s medical staff for helping him recover fully from a calf injury in the game against Mexico.
First Published: Oct 12, 2017 11:10 IST