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FIFA U-17 World Cup: Long Way to Go But Showed the World India Can Play Football, Says Sanjiv Stalin

Talking after the match, Stalin admitted that he had never faced such quality before and that this was the toughest game he ever played. The defender was still optimistic about the team’s overall performance.

Arjit Dabas | News18 Sports

Updated:October 13, 2017, 10:30 AM IST
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FIFA U-17 World Cup: Long Way to Go But Showed the World India Can Play Football, Says Sanjiv Stalin
Sanjeev Stalin. (Special Arrangement)
New Delhi: Sanjeev Stalin came into the tournament as one of the most highly rated prospects in the Indian team and someone who was known as a dead ball specialist.

In fact, he provided the assist for India’s only goal in the tournament, as his corner found a leaping Jeakson, who scored India’s first ever FIFA World Cup goal.

However, Thursday was a harsh reality check for the right back as he had a rather poor day, with Ghana’s Sadiq Ibrahim and Arko-Mensah running rings around the defender and going past him at will.

Talking after the match, Stalin admitted that he had never faced such quality before and that this was the toughest game he ever played. The defender was still optimistic about the team’s overall performance.

“There are a lot of positives from this World Cup, the fans cheered for us and we showed them that we can play football, it was a very good experience for us.”

Stalin further stressed that every game was a learning experience, and it has made the team a better unit.

“This is the World Cup and every player is world class. They are playing in the top leagues in their country. There is still a long way to for us as a team. We learnt a lot but there is still more to do,” Stalin said, sounding hungrier than ever.

Talking about going abroad to further improve his skills, Stalin added, “I don’t know what will happen ahead, we will see how it goes,”

India bowed out of the FIFA U-17 World after losing their last group match 0-4 to Ghana in what was their biggest defeat of the tournament. The team had impressed everyone with its fighting spirit in the losses against Colombia (1-2), and the USA (0-3).
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