Highlights, Intercontinental Cup 2018 Final, India vs Kenya: Sunil Chhetri leads from front to guide Blue Tigers to title

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Highlights, Intercontinental Cup 2018 Final, India vs Kenya: Sunil Chhetri leads from front to guide Blue Tigers to title
  • 22:44 (IST)

    Well that's it from here. It was a wonderful tournament for Indian football. A rally cry from Sunil Chhetri was received wholeheartedly by the Indian football fans who turned up in throes at the Mumbai football Arena for all the matches after the insipid turnout in the tournament opener. 

    Chhetri promised that the Indian fans would be in for an excellent time if they just turn up. The Indian players lived up to the promise by winning the Hero Intercontinental Cup 2018 in front of a raucous crowd who cheered for the team in every match. 

    It is a positive turn of events for Indian football and it will be onwards and upwards for the Blue Tigers from here on

    Thank you. 

  • FULL TIME!

    India win the Intercontinental Cup with a rather comfortable win in the final against India. Brilliant all-round performance from the team, completely outplayed Kenya on the night.

    India were the best team in the competition and are worthy winners. Time for the team to celebrate the success before moving on to greater things

  • Campeones! Campeones sing the crowd. With a few minutes still to play, it is a bit premature, but India looking good to see this through. Kenya need something special now

  • 21:41 (IST)

    80' IND 2-0 KEN

    India maintaining a great defensive shape. It's been a very disciplined effort that may go unnoticed. Great shift from the likes of Udanta who have been excellent with their defensive duties. India are allowing Kenya on to themselves. The press only comes after Kenya enter the last third of the pitch. The introduction of Rowlin has made them more solid but also more defensive. India posing less of a threat since Jeje's departure but they don't need to score

  • Constantine looking to shore things up in midfield. It seems he is happy to keep what he has and see this through. India have been largely untroubled so far, but Constantine taking no chances

  • 21:22 (IST)

    65' IND 2-0 KEN

    Formation change for India. Constantine switching to a 4-5-1 system. Sunil Chhetri moves to the left wing. Balwant Singh is the lone man forward. Rowlin Borges will sit in the middle to make it a midfield three.

  • Second half begins. Kenya with two early attempts on the Indian goal. The visitors have come out with a lot of intent

  • HT: IND 2-0 KEN

    India in complete control at the break. Kenya have failed to match India's intensity. The defending for the two Indian goals has been shoddy to say the least. India have turned up tonight and have one hand on the trophy already

  • 64 goals international goals now for Sunil Chhetri in 102 matches for India. He's no Messi, he's no Ronaldo, but he is worth his weight in gold for India at the moment

  • GOAL!

    IND 2-0 KEN

     A simple long ball undoes the Kenyans. Sunil Chhetri runs into space between two central defenders, chests down the ball, outmuscles the defender and sends low effort past Matasi into the net. Brilliant finish from the Indian captain but dreadful defending from Kenya

  • 20:30 (IST)

    25' IND 1-0 KEN

    Kenyans have upped the attack in the final and are unsettling the Indians for the first time this match. The speed and physicality of the Kenyan players have held them in good stead over the past few minutes. A couple of close chances, but the Indian defence has just about managed to maintain the lead 

  • The flash lights are out. Looking nice and bright. The fans trying to match up to their team who have been brighter in the opening exchanges

  • 10' India 1-0 Kenya

    GOAL! Kenya caught cold. Instead of crossing the ball from a free kick just outside penalty area on the right-hand side, Anirudh Thapa squares it to Sunil Chhetri who escapes the clutter of players to meet the grounded square pass and fire it into the net first time. Early lead and the Mumbai Football Arena is bouncing already.

    Moments later Chhetri is through on goal again but chooses to pass it across the face of the goal instead of shooting. There are no Indian takers and chance is gone. Good vibrant start from India. Kenya struggling to live with the pace and movement of Indian forwards

  • 20:14 (IST)

    GOAL!

    IND 1-0 KEN

    An eighth-minute goal from India skipper Sunil Chhetri opens the scoring in the Intercontinental Cup Final. It started with a brilliant pass from Anirudh Thapa and Chhetri succinctly kicked it past the Kenyan goalkeeper to give hosts the lead in the FINAL 

  • KICK OFF!

    Kenya get us underway at the Mumbai Football Arena. India attacking from left to right in the first half

  • Tri-colour in the stand. Will that also be the case on the pitch?

  • There's a light drizzle as the players walk off the pitch after warm-up. The Rain Gods doing their bit to get the best possible conditions. A last spray of water before kickoff. Perfect for neat, zippy passing game of football  

  • 19:41 (IST)

    India warming up. In the background, the team is being announced and Sunil Chhetri's name is met with a loud cheer. The crowd is expecting a big performance from him, and rightly so

  • As promised by Stephen Constantine, India go full strength. Jeje Lalpekhlua, Sandesh Jhingan, Anas Edathodika, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Pronoy Halder, Sudhasish Bose, Halicharan Narzary, Udanta Singh all return to the fold. India expected to line up in their 4-4-1-1 formation.

    Kenya make 2 changes. Midfielder Kenneth Mugambi Mukuna and defender Bernard Ogina are included

  • Big crowd expected again today. Stadium is slowly filling in. The members of Bharat Army, Indian cricket team's supporter's club are here nice and early and they are making lots of noise.
     
    As far as the Blue Pilgrims are concerned watch out for a one of a kind 3D banner that's going to be unfurled just before kick off.

  • 19:19 (IST)

    Here's Kaushal Shukla's preview of the all-important Final of a tournament that has got India's footballing community rallying behind the national team 

  • 19:08 (IST)

    Here's Firstpost correspondents Kaushal Shukla and Anish Anand previewing the FINAL between India and Kenya 

  • 18:57 (IST)

    Hello and welcome to Firstpost's coverage of the Hero Intercontinental Cup 2018 FINAL between India and Kenya 

Preview: India might have blanked Kenya 3-0 in their previous encounter but head coach Stephen Constantine on Saturday said it counts for nothing and his boys will not take their opponents for granted in the finals of the Intercontinental Cup.

Kenya romped into the final of the four-nation tournament after thrashing Chinese Taipei 4-0 in the last league game to set up the summit clash with hosts India.

"Look, what we did in the round-robin is done and dusted. When we go to the next game, you cannot take anything for granted and we will not take anything for granted," Constantine told reporters at the pre-final media conference.

India and Kenya fight it out in the summit clash of the Hero Intercontinental cCup 2018. Twitter @Indianfootball

India and Kenya fight it out in the summit clash of the Hero Intercontinental cCup 2018. Twitter @Indianfootball

"Kenya showed (against Chinese Taipei), that they are capable, especially for (set-pieces), and we need to be very careful and we respect them. But we will try to win the game, he added.

Constantine, who had made as many as seven changes to India's starting line-up against New Zealand, said the hosts will field a full strength side on Sunday.

"We will be at our full strength for this game (final). We have two central defenders who have been outstanding for us - Sandesh (Jhingan) and Anas, so that will help," he said.

The Englishman said his goals from the tournament were fulfilled and the final target is to lift the trophy.

"Yes, obviously the ultimate is to win (the tournament), the second was to qualify for the final and the third one was to get up a group and in the process try and include as many young players as we possibly can," Constantine said.

"It has been my mantra in India and just about everywhere I have been. I believe in youth, young players. In the last three and half years, we have given 30 international debuts, 15 of those have proved to be decent players and we have an U23 side coming and 10-11 are in this squad," he added.

He also hoped that the weather is sunny on Sunday.

"This (the weather) is something I (cannot) control and we will like to play the final."

Constantine feels Indian players do have the talent to play abroad.

"The thing what you would have noticed with New Zealand side is that they were comfortable with the ball, because that's what they have been taught. This is where we need to improve in India, what are we teaching them," he said.

"Today we don't have an Indian player playing regularly outside India. That for me is something that I feel strongly about. I believe we have players in this country who can go out and play, I don't say in La Liga or in Premier League and I would like to see that happen," said the coach, who is having his second stint with India.

He also clarified that they were yet to get an official word on whether India will go to the Asian Games.

"Hopefully the snippets of news I am getting that the Olympic Committee and the government has decided to send, we have not received anything in writing, if that is the case, then I am thankful. It is a great move and it gives our boys added exposure, so that will be our next camp next month," he said.

Anirudh Thapa, who plays as a central midfielder, said India need to adapt to the condition faster.

"We have to quickly adapt to the situation and play accordingly. If there is water on the pitch, we have to adjust accordingly. The situation against Kenya was challenging but we coped up well. We'll try to do the same," he quipped.

With inputs from PTI


Updated Date: Jun 10, 2018 22:44 PM

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