FIFA World Cup Qualifiers 2022: “We couldn’t deliver the performance to match the atmosphere at the VYBK” says Sunil Chhetri

A jam-packed VYBK Stadium hosted India against Bangladesh for the joint qualification of the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers 2022 and the AFC Asian Cup 2023 yesterday. As the captain recently mentioned in his tweet, team India failed to deliver and the dressing room is highly disappointed with the result.

“We couldn’t deliver a performance to match the atmosphere at Salt Lake last night, and the dressing room is very disappointed about it,” said Sunil Chhetri. “We couldn’t capitalise on the chances we got, but this is a process on the pitch and in the stands. You turned up, we’ll keep attempting to.”

Adil Khan rescued team India by a header coming from Brandon’s corner at the later stages of the match. For him and the entire team, it was a moment of resilience, as the entire nation witnessed what the experienced defender is capable of. Adil’s father was undergoing a heart surgery at the same time the match kicked off and scoring his first goal for the nation on the same day accounted for a memorable day in his life.

“I cannot explain the emotions that were coursing through my veins when I headed that in. My father went into a heart surgery about the same time that the match kicked off. I would like to dedicate this goal to my family – my father and my wife. I would also like to thank all the fans who were there and made that moment even more special. Thank you all for turning up in numbers.” said Adil.


On the same context, Adil believes there are several aspects to work on. The team needs to figure out the areas that need improvement and work on them thoroughly.

India’s young midfielder Anirudh Thapa believes that it is matches like these, where one gets to see packed stadiums, that the players play the sport for.

“It was rather disappointing to finish with just one point in this match, as we created so many chances, but failed to take them in the end. However, I would like to thank all the fans that turned up in the stands in Kolkata,” he said.

“As a footballer, it is matches and atmosphere like this that we live for. We could not get the result that you all have been hoping for, but we will keep working hard to do better in the future,” Thapa rounded off.


In the end, India’s hunt for the first win in the joint qualifiers continues as the Blue Tigers were relieved by a draw against the visitors.


For Trial related updates: Latest trials updates in Mumbai Football

Also Read: FIFA WCQ 2022: India end on equal terms against Bangladesh
Also Read: FC Goa: Rekindling Goa’s love for football

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