India faced its second consecutive defeat in the ongoing FIFA U-17 World Cup after going down 1-2 to Colombia in an entertaining FIFA U-17 World Cup encounter at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium in New Delhi.
A pulsating first half saw India come ever so close to breaking the deadlock. However, Abhijit Sarkar’s close-range shot was well saved by Colombia goalkeeper Kevin Mier before Rahul Kannoly struck the post for the tournament hosts in stoppage time.
In between those Indian opportunities, their goalkeeper Dheeraj Moirangthem continued his impressive form with a series of fine saves to keep the Colombians at bay.
However, in the 49th minute of the game, Juan Penaloza opened the scoring for Colombia with his brilliant strike, making the scoreline 1-0.
From that moment of the game, the visitors started taking control of the game and never really gave India a chance for scoring a goal. The advantage lasted until the late stages, when India’s endeavours to score finally paid off from a corner on 82 minutes.
However, Jeakson Thounaojam scored India’s first-ever goal in a FIFA competition, with a superb header, thus equalising the scoreline.
It brought delirium to the New Delhi crowd, but before they could fully savour that special moment, Penaloza struck again a minute later to put Colombia back in front for good, as he slid home after taking a pass off the chest from Gustavo Carvajal.
With the loss, India’s hopes of qualifying to the next round are now in tatters.
The Amarjit Kiyam-led side, which lost their opening game 0-3 to the United States of America on October 6, will now face Ghana in the last Group A fixture on October 12.