India were handed over their second defeat in the ongoing Intercontinental Cup as DPR Korea outclassed the Blue Tigers 5-2 at EKA Arena here on Saturday. Indian coach Igor Stimac made nine changes to the team from the previous match against Tajikistan. This was a must-win match for both the teams to make it to the final of the tournament.
With this loss, the Indian team now would find it tough to progress to the final. DPR Korea came out all guns blazing as they registered a goal in the 8th minute of the match. Jong II Gwan scored the first goal, giving the team 1-0 lead. Soon after, DPR Korea extended their lead to 2-0, as Sim Hyon Jin made the most from the Indian defensive error.
The Blue Tigers were looking all at sea as DPR Korea registered the third goal in the 29th minute. Jong II Gwan scored his second goal of the match to give the team a 3-0 lead. No more goals were registered in the first half, and at half-time, the scoreline read 3-0 in favour of DPR Korea. The Indian team came out in attacking fashion looking for their first goal in the match. The Blue Tigers finally got their opening goal in the 50th minute as Lallianzuala Chhangte scored for the team bringing the scoreline to 3-1.
But soon after, DPR Korea registered their fourth goal as Ri Un Chol scored in the 63rd minute, consolidating the team’s lead to 4-1. Sunil Chhetri scored the second goal for India in the 71st minute bringing the scoreline to 4-2. But the Blue Tigers failed to do much as DPR Korea sealed the match in the dying minutes of the game as Ri Hyong Jin registered the goal in the 91st minute.
DPR Korea, which won the match 5-2, will next face Tajikistan on July 15 whereas India will lock horns with Syria on July 16.