Road to AFC U-16 Championship 2018: India's results since 2017

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As India U-16 gear up for the AFC U16 Ch'ship, Goal tracks the results of the team...

The U-16 Indian national team is currently readying itself for the 2018 AFC (Asian Football Confederation) U-16 Championship finals to be held in Malaysia between September 20 and October 7.

Bibiano Fernandes, the team's head coach, was also the former India U-14 head coach. He led his side to the 2017 SAFF (South Asian Football Federation) U-15 Championship title in Nepal which was his first official competition after taking charge of the India U-16 boys.

INDIA U-14 TEAM PRACTICE MATCH IN GOA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 28/1/2017 Bengaluru FC U-16 0-2 Lost

 

INDIA U-15 TEAM PRACTICE MATCH IN GOA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 3/2/2017 Sporting Clube de Goa U-18 2-1 Won

At this point, several players were on trial to make the India U-16 squad.

INDIA U-16 TEAM PRACTICE MATCHES
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 11/3/2017 Indian women's national team 5-0 Won
2 18/3/2017 Indian women's national team 7-0 Won
3 22/3/2017 Indian women's national team 3-1 Won
4 24/3/2017 Minerva Punjab 0-2 Lost
5 28/3/2017 India U-17 0-5 Lost
6 13/4/2017 India U-19 2-5 Lost
7 ??/4/2017 Goa FC U-16 4-0 Won
8 ??/4/2017 Goa U-17 5-2 Won

In one of its first exposure trips, the Blue Colts travelled to Egypt to participate in the India-Egypt Friendship Cup 2017 and tasted success against the local sides.

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India U16 national team

INDIA U-16 AT THE INDIA-EGYPT FRIENDSHIP CUP
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 22/4/2017 Al Ahly U-16 2-1 Won
2 23/4/2017 Smouha Club 3-1 Won

Bibiano Fernandes' boys would play more practice matches in Goa.

 INDIA U-16 TEAM PRACTICE MATCHES
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 30/5/2017 Oorja U-19, Goa State Team 2-3 Lost
2 3/6/2017 Cavelossim U-19 3-1 Won
3 9/6/12017 Cavelossim U-19 1-0 Won
4 13/6/2017 Rosary College U-20 1-1 Draw
5 20/6/2017 Navelim College U-20 1-1 Draw
6 29/6/2017 Navelim College U-20 6-2 Won

The India U-16 team took part in the 2017 SAFF U-15 Championship to prepare for the 2018 AFC U-16 Championship qualifiers.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE SAFF U-15 CHAMPIONSHIP IN NEPAL
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 19/8/2017 Maldives 9-0 Won
2 23/8/2017 Nepal 2-1 Won
3 25/8/12017 Bhutan 3-0 Won
4 27/8/2017 Nepal 2-1 Won

A camp in Qatar was also on the cards ahead of the qualifiers.

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCH IN QATAR
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 3/9/2017 Qatar U-16 1-0 Won

Despite pitted against the likes of Palestine, Nepal and Iraq, India qualified as the second-best team in the group. 

India U16 vs Iraq in AFC Qualifier

INDIA U-16 AT AFC U-16 CHAMPIONSHIP QUALIFIERS IN NEPAL
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 20/9/2017 Palestine 3-0 Won
2 22/9/2017 Nepal 2-2 Draw
3 24/9/2017 Iraq 0-0 Draw

Tours to Dubai and Qatar were followed by those in Hong Kong and Spain, with more exposure.

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCHES IN DUBAI
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 ??/1/2018 Shaba Al Ahli 5-0 Won
2 ??/1/2018 Al Hamriya Club 10-1 Won
3 28/1/2018 Ajman Club 3-1 Won

A winning run continued for the youngsters in Qatar as well. 

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCHES IN QATAR
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 ??/2/2018 Aspire U-16 2-0 Won
2 5/2/2018 Al Sadd 1-0 Won
3 12/2/2018 Aspire U-16 1-0 Won

India U-16 went on to win the Jockey Cup International Youth Invitational Football Tournament 2018 in Hong Kong where they faced U-17 opponents and won the competition maintaining their 100 per cent record.

India U16 starting XI v Chinese Taipei in the Scoreboard at the Jockey Club International Youth Invitational Football Tournament

 INDIA U-16 AT THE JOCKEY CUP IN HONG KONG
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 23/3/2018 Chinese Taipei U-17 4-0 Won
2 24/3/2018 Singapore U-17 3-1 Won
3 25/3/2018 Hong Kong U-17 4-2 Won

The MIC (Mediterranean International Cup) 2018 in Spain marked the start to the team's European sojourn.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE MIC CUP 2018 IN SPAIN
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 28/3/2018 IFC Stocksund (Sweden) 1-0 Won
2 29/3/2018 BCN FC (Australia) 9-0 Won
3 29/3/2018 CEF SP Vidrerenca (Spain) 4-0 Won

India U16 coaching staff

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCH IN SPAIN
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 10/4/2018 Fundacion Valencia 0-0 Draw

It was a difficult task against the likes of USA (United States of America) and Norway whose players were much bigger in stature.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE SPORTCHAIN CUP IN SPAIN
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 16/4/2018 USA U-16 0-1 Lost
2 18/4/2018 Norway U-16 1-3 Lost
3 21/4/2018 USA U-16 0-1 Lost

India U16 after winning in Serbia

The India U-16 team remained unbeaten as they lifted silverware in the four nation-tournament held in Serbia from May 9-13, 2018.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE FOUR-NATION TOURNAMENT IN SERBIA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 9/5/2018 Jordan U-16 2-1 Won
2 11/5/2018 Serbia U-16 0-0 Draw
3 13/5/2018 Tajikistan U-16 4-2 Won

Bibiano Fernandes led a 25-member squad on a month-long tour to China, Thailand and Malaysia. The colts would begin their tour with a four-nation invitational tournament in Weinan city, China, involving the U16 sides of Thailand and DPR Korea apart from the hosts.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE FOUR-NATION TOURNAMENT IN CHINA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 3/7/2018 China U-17 0-1 Lost
2 5/7/2018 Thailand U-16 1-3 Lost
3 7/7/2018 DPR Korea U-16 1-1 Draw

In Thailand, the Indian youngsters took on the hosts along with two warm-up games against local teams and a repeat clash against the Thailand U-16s.

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCHES IN THAILAND
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 13/7/2018 Buriram United FC U-17 2-0 Won
2 17/7/2018 Bangkok Glass FC U-17 2-2 Draw
3 20/7/2018 Thailand U-16 1-2 Lost

The team would then move on to Malaysia for the final leg of their three-nation tour where they took on the hosts and a local club during their week-long stay.

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCHES IN MALAYSIA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 23/7/2018 Malaysia U-16 0-3 Lost
2 26/7/2018 Malaysia U-16 2-1 Won
3 29/7/2018 Selangor U-16 7-1 Won

India U-16

In the 2018 WAFF (West Asian Football Federation) U-16 Boys' Championship in Amman, Jordan, India finished runners-up to Japan after registering wins over Yemen and defending AFC U-16 champions Iraq.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE WAFF U-16 CHAMPIONSHIP IN JORDAN
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 2/8/2018 Jordan U-16 4-0 Won
2 4/8/2018 Japan U-16 1-2 Lost
3 6/8/2018 Iraq U-16 1-0 Won
4 7/8/2018 Yemen U-16 3-0 Won

In their final overseas tour, the boys travelled to Turkey where they faced Oman, Cameroon and Besiktas.

 INDIA U-16 AT THE TRI-NATION TOURNAMENT IN TURKEY
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 20/8/2018 Oman U-16 2-1 Won
2 22/8/2018 Cameroon U-16 2-1 Won

India U-16 Cameroon

The India U-16 squad engaged in one more friendly encounter before returning home from Turkey. 

 INDIA U-16 AT THE WAFF U-16 CHAMPIONSHIP IN JORDAN
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 25/8/2018 Besiktas U-16 5-1 Won

Bibiano and Co. engaged in their last a few practice matches in the country before arriving into Malaysia a few days before the championship in order acclimatise to the conditions.

 INDIA U-16 PRACTICE MATCHES IN GOA
Match No. Date Opponent Score Result
1 1/9/2018 Vasco SC 2-1 Won
2 4/9/2018 Rosary College 4-0 Won
3 6/9/2018 Dempo SC U-18 2-1 Won

India are grouped alongside Vietnam, defending champions Iran and Indonesia in Group C of the AFC U-16 Championship and play the respective nations on September 21, 24 and 27. A top-four finish in the continental age group competition will attract a direct spot in the 2019 U-17 World Cup that is to be held in Peru.

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