Football has truly arrived in India. Well at least women's football has. The Chhatrapati Shahu stadium in Kolhapur witnessed a packed house as about 20 thousand people came out to cheer the Indian women as they took on their much superior European counterparts.
The crowd had filled in 30 minutes prior to kickoff. Aditi Chauhan, the Indian custodian could not believe what she was witnessing. “I can’t control my emotions. This is amazing. I have never felt so proud playing football. I bow down to the crowd’s unparalleled support,” she quipped.
Myrusha Victoria, the Dutch full back, who was also adjudged the Man of the Match confessed, "Even though in Europe where football for women is respected and well sought after, It is the first time I am witnessing such a frenzy for womens football in my life."
The Dutch women dominated their Indian counterparts but the Indian team gave a good account of themselves as they took on the number 14 ranked side in the world. Broeke scored early as she put away a cross from Joleon Van Der Jeest.
Sylvana Tieleman scored in the second half as she easily capitalised on a one-on-one situation with the keeper after Yentl Abbing set her up beautifully.
The Indian women were a touch unfortunate as Swati Rawat muffed an easy chance from Ashalata Devi’s free-kick which the Dutch keeper failed to collect. Subhaprava Rout and Swati Rawat were standout performers for the hosts as they threaded neat passes to perfection.
The Indian team relied on the counter as the Dutch seemed to play on a high line. The heat proved to be an obstacle for the visitors as they could not cope with the extreme conditions.
As the full time whistle blew, the scores read Netherlands 2-0 India but the Indian coach Anadi Barua was impressed with her wards as she commented, “We played well, I would say 75% of what we are capable of. In football you have to score goals to win. We missed couple of sitters today, but overall I’m happy that we played so well against the mighty Dutch. I am sure the girls will learn a lot from their little mistakes up front and give their best in the next game in Navi Mumbai."
How do you stay up to date with football when on the move? With http://m.goal.com – your best source for mobile coverage of the beautiful game.