India romps Bhutan in unofficial friendly

Halicharan Narzary, Sumeet Passi and captain Jeje Lalpekhlua's goals guided India to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Bhutan in an unofficial friendly in Thimpu on Saturday despite coach Stephen Constantine admitted that the team's "altitude posed a serious threat".

India scored all its three goals well within 21 minutes.   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

Halicharan Narzary, Sumeet Passi and captain Jeje Lalpekhlua's goals well within the first 21 minutes itself guided India to a comfortable 3-0 victory over Bhutan in an unofficial friendly in Thimpu on Saturday despite coach Stephen Constantine admitted that the team's “altitude posed a serious threat”.

“The altitude was a bit of a problem as it is for any team that comes here but as we had worked so hard in Delhi in the pre-season camp, it didn’t prove much of a hindrance for us. It shows that if we get to work with the boys for around 12 days or more, we can overcome most obstacles,” he said.

"I need to thank the AIFF General Secretary (Mr. Kushal Das) for allowing us the time to train in Delhi."

India, however, failed to add to its tally despite Bhutan being reduced to10-men for the last 36 minutes. There were chances with one of Jeje's shot even hit the inside of the bar and bounced back.

Nevertheless, Constantine mentioned that the boys “could have done better.”

“I am pleased that we won the game but we could have done a lot better. But I also need to remind myself that the boys haven’t kicked a ball in the last three months and there were a whole lot of new Players who are breaking into the National squad. It was an opportunity for them to make a case for being selected in the next Camp,” he stated.

India made full use of all their six substitutions with four newcomers — Germanpreet Singh, Vinit Rai, Issac Vanmalsawma and Chinglesana Singh.

In the process, Constantine has introduced 32 new faces in international football though the four newcomers of the day won’t be counted as official debuts as it was an unofficial match.

  Dugout videos