Abu Dhabi, January 10: Khalfan Mubarak and Ali Mabkhout scored a goal each as hosts United Arab Emirates (UAE) defeated spirited India 2-0 in their second AFC Asian Cup 2019 match in Group A here on Thursday (January 10).
Mubarak gave the hosts a lead in the 41st minute as they headed into the change room with a lead of 1 one at half-time. The Indians kept creating opportunities for themselves from the 11th minute into the game but they never really managed to send the ball into the nets.
The second goal for UAE came in the 88th minute when Mabkhout got the better of the Indian defenders as their custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu could hardly do anything to prevent the UAE attacker from scoring who had all the time in the world to score his first goal in this year's tournament.
With this win, UAE (FIFA ranking 79) took their first three points in the tournament and went at the top of the table. India were pretty unlucky in the night as they had created too many chances in the game but luck seems to have evaded the Blue Tigers.
The Indian players' shots ricocheted from the bar on as many as three occasions which tells how unlucky the Indians were on the pitch. Also, the UAE goalkeeper Khalid Eisa was alert between the bars and denied the Indians, who had a goal fest in their previous game, any opportunity to celebrate.
"It was a tight game. UAE are a good side, and they converted their chances. When you get your chances, you got to convert them. If we could have taken ours, it could have been different," said India skipper Sunil Chhetri.
"We are still in the running. As a team, we are united and we are ready to fight, and that's what we are going to do against Bahrain," he added further.
India will now face Bahrain in their last group encounter on January 14 and still have a chance to secure a win and qualify into the next stage.
Here are the highlights from the match:
India created a lot of chances in this game but certainly, it wasn't their day. The second goal would hurt India for it was a blunder into the middle and it should have been avoided.
FULL TIME!!! UAE beat India 2-0 to take three points and come back strongly after facing a defeat in their opening game. The hosts take the game away in style but it was hard luck for the Blue Tigers for they had their moments in this game.
90+3' OFF THE BAR AGAIN! Borges swings a free-kick into a dangerous area and Jhingan manages to glance it towards goal, but it's come back off the crossbar.
87' Time ticking away for India as UAE bring on two players in midfield positions to stop the Blue Tigers' attack from finding space.
85' Substitution for UAE! Man with the mask Matar has stepped into the pitch to replace goal scorer Mubarak.
81' Another attack by the Indian side. the headed ball from Sunil Chhetri almost finds Jeje. IND 0-1 UAE
80'! 10 more minutes to go in this game before the referees add the injury time. India are in desperate need to score the equaliser.
78' Substitution India! Jacky Chan has replaced Udanta as India desperately need an equaliser.
77' Consecutive corners for UAE! India defenders deny UAE any success.
75' Alahmadi is played into the box, shoots, his shot takes a deflection hits the post, then takes a touch off Gurpreet and goes out of play.
74' Lucky! Mohammedi's shot is deflected off Subhasish and hits the upright before coming back into play to hit Gurpreet, but it goes out for a corner that's dealt with. IND 0-1 UAE
72' Another Yellow card for India! Subashish gets the second yellow of the night.
71' SUBSTITUTION for India! Rowllin Borges comes on for Anirudh Thapa! India 0-1 UAE
69' Gurpreet hooves it upfield, Chhetri brings it down for Subhasish, who plays it back to the forward, but the UAE defence gets back on the ball. IND 0-1 UAE
India have had more shots but haven't been lucky!
60' The @IndianFootball team have had 9⃣shots so far while UAE have 7⃣ to their name as we cross the hour mark! The hosts are the ones who have made their chances count better.— Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) January 10, 2019
IND 0-1 UAE#BlueTigers #BackTheBlue #FanBannaPadega #IndianFootball #INDUAE
62' A dangerous cross into the box, but Gurpreet collects it with one hand and hits it in the second half. Indian forward Jeje couldn't hold on to it.
Every India fan's reaction so far in this game!
HOW DID THAT NOT GO IN!— Jamshedpur FC (@JamshedpurFC) January 10, 2019
Udanta hits the bar with a right footed shot after a quick one-two with the captain.
Apna goal kab aayega? 😞
🇮🇳 0 - 1 🇦🇪#JamKeKhelo #BackTheBlue #AsianDream #BlueTigers pic.twitter.com/D1IAjEy8i8
57' Free-kick for India! Chhetri lines it up, but its just over the bar. The ball just did not dip in time. IND 0-1 UAE
56' OFF THE BAR!! What else do they have to do? Jeje plays it to Udanta, who plays a one-two with Chhetri and shoots, but it ricochets off the bar.
53' CLOSE! The free-kick sent into the box was cleared towards Jeje but his attempt is off target.
52' IND yellow: Ashique receives a caution as his attempts to skip away ends up hurting a UAE player with a flailing elbow.
50' Bandar soars down the right flank, jinking past three players, but Anas slides in with a crunching tackle.
46' Substitution India! Jeje Lalpekhlua comes in for Halicharan Narzary.
Second Half starts! India must be looking for an equaliser early on to keep themselves in the game.
HALF TIME! The referee blows the whistle and that brings an end to an intriguing first half. It's been an enterprising 45 minutes, but UAE have taken the lead in the opening half. The Blue Tigers are trailing at the break despite creating plenty of chances. Ideally, the scoreline should have read 3-1, as India had created a couple of big chances but the hosts' defender and goalkeeper Eisa has ensured India are still goalless.
45+2' Ismail is stretcherred off the pitch, but Sandesh Jhingan is up and runniong with a strapping to his head.
45' A bit of a coming together between Sandesh Jhingan and Ismael, and both the big men go down in a heap. Ismael seems to be bleeding, as the two physios come out to treat the two players.
43' Chance! Sunil Chhetri counter-attacks and latches on to a lose ball and breaks into the UAE box, and shoots from an acute angle.....his shot goes tantalisingly wide, though. IND 0-1 UAE
GOAL! UAE go ahead! MAbkhout breaks down the right, flicks it on to Alshamsi, who charges forward and puts it past Gurpreet, to put UAE in the lead. IND 0-1 UAE
39' Sandesh Jhingan blocks Alahmadi in the Indian box and Gurpreet collects the ball safely.
37' SAVED and corner for UAE!
35' Corner for UAE! Amer's free-kick into the Indian box is headed out by Narzaray and UAE win a corner. The corner is swung in, but it is cleared by Pronay. IND 0-0 UAE
33' Alahmadi soars down the left flank, squares it to Esmaeel, who pulls the trigger from 25 yards out. But his shot flies high into the sky.
Something for India to be happier!
30' @StephenConstan has enjoyed 1⃣2⃣ wins in his last 1⃣7⃣ matches while UAE's Alberto Zaccheroni has won only 4⃣ times in his last 1⃣7⃣ matches!— Indian Super League (@IndSuperLeague) January 10, 2019
IND 0-0 UAE#BlueTigers #BackTheBlue #FanBannaPadega #IndianFootball #INDUAE
29' Corner for India! Anirudh Thapa crosses a short corner in, and Ismael miscues his clearance. But it was a bit too far from Ashique, and keeper Eisa collects it. IND 0-0 UAE
27' Pritam Kotal tries to cut an attack out and ends up botching his clearance inside India's box! Gurpreet is on hand to collect and mop up the danger!
25' SAVE! Gurpreet and alert Indian defenders deny UAE any advantage! India have had 5 shots to 2 against UAE. The Indians are playing in the opposition's half.
23' CHANCE!! Another superb save from UAE custodian. Udanta does well to hold the ball up and feed Anirudh Thapa, who stands it up for Chhetri in the box! The India skipper sees his bullet header palmed away by Khalid Eisa!
Oh damn!!!! That was sooooo close #INDvUAE ⚽️🇮🇳— Gaurav Kapur (@gauravkapur) January 10, 2019
19' Anirudh Thapa makes a crucial interception in his own half, plays it through to Ashique, which is fouled. IND 0-0 UAE
15' First 15 minutes have passed and India have played with attacking intent. India have already created a couple of chances but failed to convert them. IND 0-0 UAE
11' CHANCE! Sunil Chhetri tracks back to intercept the ball and plays Ashique through on goal. However, Bilal makes a smart save to keep the scores level. India are playing with an aggressive intent in the last five minutes or so. IND 0-0 UAE.
8' Chance Missed! Thapa shot the ball into the D and Sandesh Jhingan failed to convert it into a success with a header as the ball goes over the bar.
7' Corner to India! Good skill from Udanta to make space for himself down the touchline before finding Kotal for the cross, but it's blocked away for a corner. The Blue Tigers have started well!
5' A long ball is played up the field for Khalfan to give chase to but he couldn't control it and the pass bounces straight into Gurpreet's arms! IND 0-0 UAE
3' Mabkhout is played through inside the Indian area, but Gurpreet charges out of his line, and plucks the ball out of the air. IND 0-0 UAE
Kick off!!! UEA are in whites and India are in All Blue!!! 1' The referee blows his whistle, and UAE gets the proceedings underway. IND 0-0 UAE
We are not coming here for a draw. We are coming to win the game and our target is to qualify from the group stages. We had taken the first step against Thailand and now we have to take the next one: Stephen Constantine.
UAE are the hosts and the result in the previous game would certainly be under some sort of pressure. We are starting with the winning combination and we are looking to win and grab all three points: Stephen Constantine.
"We need to get some points from today’s game against UAE 🇦🇪. The hosts always have the pressure, but they have the crowd advantage, and it won’t be easy for us. We are ready for it": @StephenConstan #INDUAE #BackTheBlue #IndianFootball #AsianDream #BlueTigers— Indian Football Team (@IndianFootball) January 10, 2019
📸: AFC Media pic.twitter.com/cMFf1OTE6V
Last time India defeated UAE was way back in 2001 in Bengaluru. The UAE have won 8 off 11 games against India. India, on the other hand, have won just two.
We are under 50 minutes away from the kick-off and here are the Starting XIs for India-UAE match!
Match kicks-off at 9:30 PM (IST).