India thrashes Turkmenistan 5-0 in AFC U-16 Championship qualifier

India got off to a winning start in the AFC U-16 Championship qualifiers with a solid 5-0 win over Turkmenistan.

India scored five past Turkmenistan on Wednesday.   -  AIFF Media

The India U-16 boys' team defeated Turkmenistan 5-0 in its opening match of the AFC U-16 Championship Qualifiers on Wednesday.

Sridarth was the top performer, scoring a brace - while Shubho Paul was also not too far behind, scoring a first-half goal, and providing an assist for Taison Singh in the second half. Substitute Himanshu Jangra scored too registered his name on the score sheet, in the second half.

Playing at the Transport Institute Stadium,  India looked to dominate its opponent from the first half itself. 

India had its first real chance when Sridarth was advanced inside the box, crossed it in for Shubho, who scuffed his header over the bar from inside the six-yard box.

Just ahead of the half-hour mark, however, the Indians took the early lead through winger Shubho.

Sridarth was played through into the Turkmen box from the right as he made his way through, sold a dummy, and pulled the trigger. While his shot was initially saved, Shubho was on hand to turn in the rebound.

Turkmenistan attempted to mount a comeback for large parts of the first half but the Indian midfield duo of Yoihenba and Sibajit maintained solidity in the middle of the park.

Just a few minutes ahead of the half-time break, Sridarth doubled the lead. Taison forced himself into the area, played a cutback, which was duly turned in by Sridarth, from inside the six-yard box.

A few minutes into the second half, Taison Singh added the third, as he smashed in a Shubho Paul cross from just outside the far post.

It was after this goal, that India gaffer Bibiano Fernandes brought on striker Himanshu Jangra in place of Taison. The striker had an immediate effect as he was played through into the box by Maheson and he went on to finish with great aplomb.

Sridarth finished off the scoring late in injury time, as he plonked it over the keeper to make it five.

The result: India 5 (Shubho Paul 23', Sridarth 40', 90+1', Taison Singh 55', Himanshu Jangra 90') beats Turkmenistan 0.

India XI: Aman Kumar Sahani (GK), Pritam Meetei, Singson, Anish Mazumder, Amandeep, Sibajit Singh, Shubho Paul, Sridarth, Maheson Singh, Taison Singh, Yoihenba Meitei

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