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2017 U17 World Cup, Group Stage
  • Joshua Sargent (30' PEN)
  • Christopher Durkin (51')
  • Andrew Carleton (84')

India outclassed in first ever World Cup outing

India were outplayed by USA in their opening encounter of the FIFA U-17 World Cup, going down 3-0 in their first ever outing at a FIFA tournament, at Delhi's Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Friday.

Captain Josh Sargent gave US the lead in the 30th minute through a penalty before Chris Dunkin (51') got a freak goal and Andrew Carleton (84') hit on the counter to finish an impressive victory.

If it wasn't for goalkeeper Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem's string of saves, India could have conceded a few more. US dominated possession and launched a wave of attacks as the hosts defended for the better part of the game.

India managed to create only a couple of clear chances through the game, Anwar Ali coming the closest to scoring in the 83rd minute as his rasping shot hit the bar. Midfielder Komal Thatal also had a decent chance in the second half, but his lob was off target.

The passing accuracy, the first touches and the positional sense of the US players was clearly superior to the hosts, with the attacking trio of Sargent, Tim Weah and Ayo Akinola keeping the Indian defenders busy all evening.

Sargent, who will sign up with Bundesliga side Werder Bremen next year, found himself alone in the Indian box early on, but his shot rebounded off the Indian keeper's chest. Dheeraj was forced into action in the 20th minute, punching away a corner to keep it 0-0.

Sargent, who will sign up with Bundesliga side Werder Bremen next year, found himself alone in the Indian box early on, but his shot rebounded off the Indian keeper's chest. Dheeraj was forced into action in the 20th minute, punching away a corner to keep it 0-0.

Following some sustained US pressure, Sargent was body-checked by Jitendra Singh off the ball inside the box and the referee pointed to the spot at the half-hour mark. Sargent converted from the spot to put the US in front.

Ningthoinganba Meetei and Komal Thatal made good moves from the wings but struggled to get a clear sight of goal. Aniket had a crack at goal late in the first half, but it went straight to the keeper. India had a golden chance in 49th minute when Thatal found himself one-on-one with the keeper after a defensive error, but his attempted lob went well over.

The third goal was a classic counter-attack -- the US defence regained possession after Anwar Ali hit the bar and the Indian defenders failed to speed back in time to stop the quick break.