India U-20 team impresses Venezuela coach Mathias

As India’s U-20 team played out a goalless draw against Venezuela in the COTIF Cup in Spain, Venezuela’s head coach, Marcos Mathias, is impressed by India’s performance.

The India U-20 team earned a goalless draw against Venezuela.   -  AIFF Media

As India’s U-20 team played out a goalless draw against Venezuela in the COTIF Cup in Spain, Venezuela’s head coach, Marcos Mathias, is impressed by India’s performance.

“I am very pleasantly surprised India played like this,” Mathias said after the match.

Venezuela U-20 is currently the runner-up of the U-20 FIFA World Cup after it had gone down to England by a solitary goal in the final played in South Korea last year.

India was represented by eight boys who were in the final squad of India’s FIFA U-17 World Cup squad, while the entire bunch is part of AIFF’s development project Indian Arrows.

“India played very well and were very organised. They maintained their team shape very well and if India continues to play like this, they have a bright future ahead,” Mathias stated.

“Their right back was quite exceptional today,” he said, referring to Boris Singh’s performance.

Meanwhile, India U-20 head coach, Floyd Pinto, stressed that the boys need to play such strong opposition like Venezuela more often.

“We need to play teams like them. Kudos to the boys for the hard work put in along with the staff,” he said. “We made changes to the line-up in terms of personnel, tweaked a bit on the way we wanted to press. It worked to perfection. All we missed was a goal,” he stated.

“When everything that you work hard for comes together, such results are possible It inspires us to constantly raise the belief that we can compete at the highest level & work harder to achieve that. With such continued support by SAI & AIFF, more can be achieved in the near future.”

The U-20 boys next play Argentina U-20 in their last encounter of the tournament. Former Argentine great Pablo Aimar is currently the Technical Director of the Argentina U-20 side.

“It will be a huge challenge,” Floyd insisted. “We will approach it in the same spirit. The priority is to recover, analyse Argentina and try to produce a repeat performance,” he maintained.

“This result against Venezuela is a testament to the team's ability to adapt to changes made to the strategy, personnel and playing style. We will keep fine-tuning it with every game.”

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