Wim Koevermans learnt his first lesson as the national coach of India as he realized after the disappointing 0-0 draw with Nepal that to play the passing brand of football, one needs a proper playing turf and not a waterlogged and uneven one, as in the case of Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium, Delhi.
"I expected my team to be better in the first half. Nepal played better in the first half, probably because there was more pressure on us,
“We defended well with everything we had. The boys were disappointed at the first half but in the second half they had two very big chances - one from Robin Singh and the other from Jewel. The Nepal goalkeeper did well to block them. The balls from the flanks created chances
“We bring the subs on where we think we can make improvements. Every long ball in the first half was without any reason,” he said in his post-match address to the media.
There was an awkward bounce each time and the players found it difficult to anticipate as to which direction or where exactly the ball would come.
“The conditions suited Nepal better. Anything can happen on this surface. But that’s the way it is for both teams.
“But I am disappointed by the result and the pitch,” he said. “We have to cope with pressure. We are still in the race to make the final,” he mentioned adding that, “It is unfortunate that games have to played on such a pitch. The ground conditions were same for both the teams. So, perhaps, we can't complain much.”
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