The Indian football team earned a lot of praise on Tuesday when they fought hard for a goalless draw against Qatar in the FIFA World Cup 2022 qualifier held in Doha.
The Blue Tigers entered this match on the back of a 1-2 loss to Oman in their first encounter, but despite Sunil Chhetri missing out due to fever, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu's goalkeeping heroics played the most important role in the match.
Gurpreet captained the side in Chhetri's absence, as coach Igor Stimac made four changes to the side that lost to Oman.
Qatar, who are the hosts for the upcoming edition of the World Cup, had been crowned the Asian Cup champions after they defeated Japan 3-1 in the final earlier this year.
Following the match, the visitors received a very cheerful response from spectators in Doha for their display as the players performed the 'Viking clap'.
Here's how Twitterati reacted to India's gritty display:
The team's got backing from their captain!
Dear India, THAT is my team and THOSE are my boys! Cannot describe how proud I am at this moment. Not a big result for the table, but in terms of a fight, as big as it can get. Huge credit to the coaching staff and the dressing room. #QATIND
— Sunil Chhetri (@chetrisunil11) September 10, 2019
It was never easy for Blue Tigers!
India's FIFA World Cup dream lives on!
Jai Hind!! 🙏🏻💪🏼🇮🇳 We dream and it’s our Dream together INDIA!! Proud of my boys and proud of the fans!! Thanks to all who believe & support us all. We all are together & We will achieve the dream together!! #FIFAWCQ2022 #QATIND #BackTheBlue 🐯 https://t.co/UxJOcuuOEf
— Igor Štimac (@stimac_igor) September 10, 2019
Running out of words to describe the display?
The most important draw?
Definitely a night to remember, the effort, the will and the guts shown by everyone in the team was truly inspiring. This result will help us to keep grow as a team and as a Nation. Thank You to all the @indianfootball fans who came to support us, you were our pillar of strength pic.twitter.com/eKvcQBZlJR
— Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (@GurpreetGK) September 11, 2019
With the draw, India earned their first point in the World Cup qualification campaign, and were placed fourth ahead of Bangladesh, who lost to Afghanistan. However, Qatar are still top of the group with four points. They had earlier thrashed Afghanistan 6-0 in their opening encounter.
Updated Date: Sep 11, 2019 09:20:03 IST