NEPAL

vs

INDIA

Dasarath Rangasala Stadium,Kathmandu
Tuesday 17th March, 2015, 15:00 IST

***

The second Leg of the World Cup Pre-Qualifiers sees Nepal play host to India. India go into the match having a 2-0 lead, courtesy of Sunil Chettri’s brace. Nepal will be looking forward to overturn the deficit and progress to the next stage, having the advantage of playing in their own backyard. However India will be adamant not to let the 2 goal advantage slip.

Team News and Tactics

Nepal

Coached by Jack Stefanowski, Nepal will have to overturn the two goal deficit to have any chance of progressing to the next stage. Nepal were outdone by their opponent in the 1st Leg of the tie, but they only conceded two goals, which means the tie is still there to be won but Nepal will have to improve a lot on their Away performance if they want to keep their hopes of Qualifying for the World Cup alive.
Kiran Chemjong will start between the sticks, Chemjong saved a vital penalty in the Away match and has to play a major part if Nepal have to go through. Biraj Mahajan will start at Right Back, Sagar Thapa and Sandip Rai are expected to partner each other in the centre of Nepal’s defence. Rabin Shrestha is expected to start at Left back

Jack Stefanowski will play Rohit Chand and Bikram Lama in Central Midfield, the midfield partenrship will be another major area where Nepal will have to dominate. Jagajeet Shrestha will be starting at the left side of midfield and Bhola Silwal will start at the opposite side, In Right midfield.

Upfront Stefanowski will be pairing up Bharat Khawas with 17 year old sensation Bimal Nagar, in place of the experienced Santosh Sahukhala.

Probable Starting XI (4-4-2) Kiran Chemjong, Biraj Mahajan, Sagar Thapa, Sandip Rai, Rabin Srestha, Rohit Chand, Bikram Lama, Jagajeet Srestha, Bhola Silwal, Bharat Khawas and Bimal Nagar.

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India

Stephen Constantine put out a fresh looking squad for the 1st leg of the pre-Qualifier, giving debuts to 7 players. The English coach has been successful, during his stint with the Indian National Team earlier and will be hoping, progress from the Pre-Qualifiers helps levitate the country’s footballing standards.

Subrata Paul, the newly appointed captain will be taking his place in Goal. Constantine’s back four were brilliant in the 1st Leg of the tie and will be absolutely vital, to the team’s chances of making it through. Stephen Constantine will be hoping his Central Defensive pairing of Sandesh Jhingan and Arnab Mondal, respond to the task of starting in such a high voltage game. Pritam Kotal put in an impressive shift in his debut and will be expected to start at Right Back ,with East Bengal defender Saumik Dey who also put in a decent defensive display at left Back expected to start.

In central midfield, Constantine will be pairing up Eugeneson Lyngdoh with Lenny Rodrigues ,Eugeneson Lyngdoh has been in fine form for Bengaluru FC this season and kept possession brilliantly for the hosts in the 1st Leg of the Pre-Quaifier.Lenny Rodrigues will be looking to put his horrific display in Guwahati behind him and play a major role in maintaining the tempo of the game.Jackichand Singh can be one player hoping for a start, after Ralte put a disappointing performance in Guwahati and Jackichand put in a brilliant one, after he came on in place of the East Bengal midfielder. Francis Fernandes will be deployed on the Right side of midfield and he will be expected to convert the chances he gets , after he failed to slot home some easy chances in the 1st Leg of the tie.

Bengaluru FC strike duo, Robin Singh and Sunil Chettri will be Constantine’s men in attack and Chettri after a match winning performance in the 1st leg,will be pumped up to ensure that India go through to the Next stage.

Probable Starting XI (4-4-2)Subrata Pal, Pritam Kotal, Arnab Mondal, Sandesh Jhingan, Saumik Dey, Francis Fernandes, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Lenny Rodrigues, Jackichand Singh, Robin Singh and Sunil Chettri.

Key Players:

Sagar Thapa (Nepal)

The Nepaleese Centre Back is the most experienced player, in the current Nepal squad and he will be someone who is to look out for in this tie. The Captain will be putting his experience to use and the Centre Back’s performance will have a strong impact on the game .

Sunil Chettri (India)

The Bengelaru FC Striker scored a brace as India defeated Nepal 2-0 in Guwahati and he will be torturing the Nepaleese defence throughout the match. He will look forward to replicate his form in the first leg and hope it will be enough to secure India a place in the next stage.

Prediction:

Nepal 0-2 India

The battle of two SAFF Nations is expected to be a tight affair, but with already a two goal advantage in hand and a potent strike force consisting of a striker in fine form, India will be expected to edge it. The Hard Tackle expects India to win and progress to the next stage.