Thimphu, Aug 13 (IANS) Sumeet Passi, Jeje Lalpekhlua and Holicharan Narzary scored as India earned a convincing 3-0 victory over Bhutan in an unofficial friendly match here on Saturday.
The dominance was totally one-sided and with the fitness levels attained in the ‘best-ever’ pre-season training camp on display, Stephen Constantine’s wards were omnipresent.
The shape, the support for the other, the slowing down, the one-twos and the sudden bursts which created chances came with a stamp of authority.
The boys, however, failed to add to their tally despite Bhutan being reduced to 10 men for the last 36 minutes. There were chances and once Jeje’s shot even hit the inside of the bar and bounced back.
India made full use of all their six substitutions with four newcomers — Germanpreet Singh, Vinit Rai, Issac Vanmalsawma and Chinglesana Singh — having a feel what international football is all about.
In the process, Constantine has introduced 32 new faces in International football though the four newcomers of the day won’t be counted as official debuts as it was an unofficial match.
Constantine admitted that the “altitude posed a serious threat”.
“The altitude was a bit of a problem as it is for any Team that comes here but as we had worked so hard in Delhi in the preseason Camp, it didn’t prove much of a hindrance for us,” Constantine said.
“It shows that if we get to work with the boys for around 12 days or more, we can overcome most obstacles. I need to thank the AIFF General Secretary (Kushal Das) for allowing us the time to train in Delhi,” the Briton added.
Constantine nevertheless mentioned that the boys “could have done better”.
“I am pleased that we won the game but we could have done a lot better. But I also need to remind myself that the boys haven’t kicked a ball in the last three months and there were a whole lot of new players who are breaking into the National squad,” the head coach said.
“It was an opportunity for them to make a case for being selected to the next camp.”