India's U17 World Cup squad have lost to Iran U18s 0-1 in the 12th-16th place playoffs at the Granatkin memorial tournament being held in St. Petersburg, Russia. The game took place on Tuesday, 17th January 2017. The Young Tigers will now take on Tajikistan U18s in a bid to avoid 'the wooden spoon' in the 16-team tournament.
Nicolai Adam's charges started the game well and dominated their Asian opponents. They forced the first chance of the game as early as in the 8th minute when Komal Thatal fired in a cross but Abhijit Sarkar failed to make contact from close range.
In the 36th minute, Amarjit was sent through on goal but he failed to beat the Iranian keeper from a one-on-one situation. To add insult to injury, Iran took the lead four minutes later when Mohammad Sharifi easily chipped the Indian goalkeeper to notch his second goal of the tournament.
After the half-time break, the Indian colts came out flying in search of an equaliser but failed to capitalise on their chances. Joysana missed a one-on-one while Abhijit Sarkar failed to finish a well-worked move. Though they kept possession well, the Indian boys could not break down the Iran defence.
Though Iran's Shariatikhameneh was sent off in the 90th minute, Nicolai Adam's boys could not make their numerical advantage count. They are now left with the unenviable task of winning their last game in order to avoid finishing last in the tournament.