India might have lost 1-2 to Colombia, their second straight defeat in the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup, but they impressed one and all with their gutsy performances in the tournament so far. The hosts put in another impressive show against the South Americans and were only minutes from registering their first points but it wasn't to be. Colombia coach Orlando Restrepo was effusive in his praise for the Indian team's defence and the called the Indian central defensive pairiing of Anwar Ali and Namit Desphpande "very good".
India, who lost 0-3 to USA in their World Cup debut, also managed to score their first World Cup goal ever and should have scored more but for the wastefulness in front of goal.
"India played very well. Congratulations to the players and coach. They defended very well and they were very organised. We just felt that we had to be patient to get the opportunities to score," Restrepo said in the post-match press conference.
Juan Penaloza, who scored the opening goal of the match in the 49th minute, broke Indian hearts with his winner in the 83rd after defensive midfielder Jeakson Thounaojam had scored India's equaliser in the 82nd minute.
Asked to pick some standout performers from among the Indians, Restrepo said, "I don't know their names but the central defenders (Anwar Ali and Namit Deshpande) were very good. They did an excellent job and were very organised in the defence."
India will take on Ghana in their last group match on October 12.
(With Inputs From PTI)