India thrash Puerto Rico to register a memorable victory

After a shaky start, India thrashed Puerto Rico 4-1 at an almost-packed Mumbai Football Arena on Saturday night. Stephan Constantine’s side was trailing 1-0 firing four goals past against a helpless Puerto Rico defense.

This was the first International match in Mumbai since India played USSR back in 1955, and it did prove to be a memorable one for all the Mumbaikars.

Puerto Rico started pretty well as compared to their counterparts and soon they got what they wished for. Defender Pritam Kotal’s reckless challenge on Elliot Velez inside the box gave Emmanuel Sanchez a good chance to put the traveling team in front from the spot. The number 9 send Gurpreet Singh Sandhu the wrong way to put Puerto Rico ahead in the seventh minute.

India responded well and equalized the score in the 19th minute. Jeje Lalpekhlua and Bikash Jairu linked up brilliantly in the final third where the latter was fouled just outside the box. Sunil Chhetri stepped up and saw his curling free kick rattled the bar before left-back Narayan Das scored from a rebound to restore the parity.

The men in blue started to settle into the game and soon became a potent threat for Puerto Rico. Five minutes after equaling the score, India was once again awarded a crucial free kick outside the box when Sunil Chhetri was blocked by Emmanuel D’Andrea.

And this time, Sunil Chhetri converted the free kick himself to put India in front. 6894 fans inside Mumbai Football Arena erupted in joy after Chhetri’s delightful free kick.

Three minutes later, Jeje Lalpekhlua missed an important chance which would have made 3-1 for India. Jackichand Singh’s amazing skills left Jacob Conde helpless who went on to provide Jeje with a pinpoint ball where the latter blasted his shot over the bar.

India started to build more pressure and put the match beyond Puerto Rico’s reach when Jeje Lalpekhlua headed in from Sunil Chhetri’s effort to make it 3-1 for the Blues.

The second-half was bit of dull affair. Both the teams missed their chances and the only goal came from Jackichand when he slotted past Puerto Rico’s goalkeeper Johnny Santana in the 58th minute.

India comfortably ended the match without facing any potent threat from Puerto Rico. First match in Mumbai in the last 61 years and it was an electrifying one, indeed.


India Khelo Football Season 3 Trials for Mumbai and Thane are here

India Khelo Football (IKF) is back with Season 3 of its widely acclaimed trials with an aim to cover more than 50 cities this time around. After the resounding success…


Mastering the Art of Football Trials: Key Pre-Trial Factors to Keep in Mind

Football trials are a critical juncture for aspiring players to showcase their skills and secure a spot in a team. To maximize your chances of success, it’s essential to tailor your approach based on your playing position as well as keeping in mind a few pre-trial factors.


Somaiya Sports Academy to conduct trials for MFA 2nd Division campaign

Somaiya Sports Academy is looking for passionate young football players for the Somaiya Sports Academy Football Team to compete in the MFA 2nd Division League 2023-2024. If selected, you will…


BFC Soccer Schools – Mumbai to conduct trials for U14 & U16 Girls

The BFC Soccer Schools Elite team girls’ trials are coming up in search of talented players from the U14 to U16 (Born 2009 and after) age groups into the club’s…


Opportunity to make the team: U.K.M. Kothrud FC conducts selection trials for girls team

Pune-based U.K.M. Kothrud FC has announced that they will be conducting selection trials for their girl’s team on 15th January 2023 The club welcomes all players to come and showcase…


The Sunday Football League Season 4 is back

The Sunday Football League is back with its fourth season, and it’s shaping up to be the best one yet. With eight talented teams competing at the Kes Kandivali turf, there…


BFC Soccer Schools Elite team trials in Feb

Bengaluru FC launched their Mumbai program last season with the Soccer Schools and Elite programs with its local partner Soccer Schools of Excellence (SSE).  Bengaluru Football Club is a professional club…


India Khelo Football Season 2 Trials in Mumbai: A Chance to Kickstart Your Football Career

After conducting trials in 34 cities & villages across India, India Khelo Football is coming to Mumbai to hunt talent on 7th January. India Khelo Football kickstarted its season 2…


Mumbai Customs to conduct trials for Elite League

Former champions Mumbai Customs will be holding open trials for the upcoming MFA Elite Corporate League (Elite Division) The 2019 MFA Elite Division champions Mumbai Customs are conducting open trials…


Sunday Boys to hold trials for MFA 1st Division

MFA 1st division side Sunday Boys FC will be conducting trials in the first week of November for the upcoming football season Sunday Boys Football Club was established in the…