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Sports


Determined to end AFC U-19 C'ship on winning note, says coach Floyd Pinto

Determined to end AFC U-19 C'ship on winning note, says coach Floyd Pinto

Al Khobar (Saudi Arabia) Nov 9 (UNI) After losing their first two matches in the ongoing AFC U-19 Championship 2020 qualifiers, India's football coach Floyd Pinto on Saturday said that the team is determined to finish the campaign on a winning note.

India has faced defeats in their opening two matches against Uzbekistan and Saudi Arabia. The side would look to play for pride in their final match against Afghanistan at the Prince Saud bin Jalawi Stadium in Al Khobar on Sunday.

"We have treated every game like a final and will go into the Afghanistan match with the same intensity and attitude as we have. We know that they will also be fighting for pride and we can expect a good game against them. Playing three matches in five days is not easy and we'll assess the players and see how they recover. We are all determined to end this tournament on a winning note,"AIFF quoted Pinto as saying.

Floyd reflected on the result against Saudi Arabia, where the team lost by four goals - all of which came in the first half-hour of the match.

"You cannot give an opposition like Saudi Arabia such easy opportunities to score. They are a quality team and punished us every time we gave the ball away cheaply. The first goal changed a lot of things - we switched off and lost our shape,' Pinto said.

"However, we improved in the second half and now, we have to pick ourselves up and get ready for the next match against Afghanistan,' he added.

The head coach also applauded the Indian supporters, who came out in large numbers to support the team at the Prince Saud bin Jalawi Stadium.

"They really gave the boys a lot of confidence. They continued to support us even when the chips were down and we were behind. At half-time, we could hear the sound of their drums and roars in the dressing room and that really made an impact on the players as they went out for the second half. I hope we can give them a good result on Sunday", the head coach said.

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