- India lost their 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup Qualifiers Group E match against Qatar 1-0
- Indian went down to 10 men after Bheke was sent back in the 17th minute of the game
- Qatar’s coach Felix Sanchez Bas laudh team India for their defence
Félix Sánchez Bas is a Spanish football coach, currently in charge of the Qatar national football team was content to secure three points against a gritty Indian team. the 10-man India lost their man to a red card in the 17th minute of the game and lost the game 1-0 against Qatar their sixth match of 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup qualifiers Group E match on Thursday at the Jassim Bin Hamad stadium in Doha.
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Abdelaziz Hatem scored what was the only goal of the match in the 33rd minute to secure three points for the hosts who remained at the top of the group.
Felix Sanchez Bas was all praise for a resolute Indian side that made it extremely difficult for the Maroons to score goals.
Sanchez said, “We expected a very tough game. We faced a team who were waiting for very us with many players in defence with very good organisation so it was very difficult to create clear chances but we created a lot.
“We tried shooting from distance, crossing from the sides, making combinations. We could score one which was enough to get the three points, that was the main target. We are happy with the three points but at the same time, we expected to score some more goals considering the difference there was in the game”.
For more than 73 minutes of the game, India had to defend with just 10-men on the field and still managed to limit Qatar to just one goal.
He also said, “The red card in the first half made the difference and then I think the plan for us was to win the tie.
“We didn’t change anything. We were playing our game we expect. Of course, playing with 10 men for a long time is not easy at the same time they had many players involved in defending. It was difficult for us to reach their goal.”
The former FC Barcelona youth coach lauded the efforts of Indian custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu in the goal and felt that his performances was one of the major reasons why his team could not score more goals.
Gurpreet had also starred for India back in November 2019, coming up with numerous saves as India held Qatar to a goalless draw.
The 45 year old Spanish coach said, “The team tried everything. We generated more than 25 shots against a team who were waiting inside their box.
“It is a difficult thing we tried but today it was not effective. Also, they were very organised and their goalkeeper once again had a great game. We have a lot of things to improve but we played a good game and we got the three points which is the most important thing. But a great effort by the opposition.
“India have shown that they are a very difficult team to beat. They concede very few goals in each game which is because of the team as a whole but the goalkeeper (Gurpreet Singh Sandhu) made a big difference.
“He was once again outstanding and he saved some goals which we created”.
In their next match, India will face Bangladesh on the 7th of June (Monday, at 7:30 PM IST) in their second round of Group E and then will finish their campaign with a match against Afghanistan on the 15th of June at the same time.
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India’s target will now be to finish third in Group E and avoid a play-off to get into the Asian Cup qualifiers. India, as of now, sits at 4th position in the group with 3 points as they have recorded no wins just 3 draws and 3 losses in their 6 matches.