SAFF Championship 2018: India vs Pakistan Semi-Final Highlights: India defeated Pakistan 3-0 as they sealed a berth in the finals of the SAFF championship in Bangladesh. It was Manvir who doubled India’s lead, India lead 2-0. Indian team displayed flurry of attacks at the beginning, Pakistan came back later and went for some quick counter-attacks, In the first 45 minutes, India put forward statistically superior performance but Pakistan defenders averted the danger well with a tactically sound defence.
India will take on Pakistan in a football match after a decade and hence all eyes will be on the encounter. India starts favourites, yet new-look Pakistan has shown that they have the capability to stage an upset. Also Read - Indian Super League 2019-20: Manvir Singh Winner Puts FC Goa Back on Winning Track
It will be a thrilling encounter as Pakistan is making a comeback to international football after a hiatus for three years. This is India’s second string side where most players are U-23, with only one player above that age group, Sumeet Passi. Also Read - India Eager to Get First Win in FIFA World Cup Qualifiers: Manvir Singh
The Blue Tigers have got off to an emphatic start in the ongoing tournament, they beat the Stephen Constantine-team beat Srilanka and the Maldives 2-0. This will be India’s first encounter with the neighbours after a gap of a decade, hence the added interest. Also Read - Indian football team stranded ahead of International friendly
Pakistan, on the other hand, has defeated Nepal and Bhutan in their previous encounters and lost to Bangladesh to reach this stage.
Pakistan coach, Brazil’s Jose Antonio Nogueira, he took over last year and the results were out there for everyone to see as their football side won U-23 side register their first win in over four decades at the Asian Games. He believes in positive play and being aggressive.
Pakistan will miss former captain Kaleemullah who has been unfit and has since signed for a Turkish fourth division side, while Danish footballer Adnan Mohammad had visa issues that barred him from joining the squad.
Pakistan has made it to the semi-final of the competition for the first time since 2005, with their best finish dating back to 1997 when they finished third. This will be a team brimming with confidence.
Hence, the arch-rivals cannot be taken lightly by Constantine.
“We are aware of the contest. But that is nothing different. It’s just another match. We can’t let the occasion get over us and hopefully, we will beat them to advance to the final,” Constantine told the AIFF.