We got what we deserved: Stephen Constantine after Turkmenistan loss

We got what we deserved: Stephen Constantine after Turkmenistan loss

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Image Courtesy:© Twitter - AIFF

After India succumbed to their seventh defeat in eight matches in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers, national team coach Stephen Constantine lashed out at the players for their poor showing. The Englishman said that the team deserved the loss after their poor performance on the field.

Although India went into the break leading 1-0 after a goal from Sandesh Jhingan, it all went downhill for the home side in the second half with Turkmenistan scoring two goals to win the match 1-2 at the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium in Kochi on Tuesday. With the loss, India finished at the bottom of Group D with just one win from their eight matches. A disappointed Stephen Constantine said that there were no excuses and that they fully deserved the defeat after the poor show from the players.

"There are no excuses. To be honest, we started very poorly and if we look at ourselves, we got exactly what we deserved from the game,” Constantine said at the post-match press conference, reported PTI.

The Indian team found it difficult to keep the possession for the majority of the game, even when they were playing a slow pedestrian game.

"Our stats suggest that a player gave away the ball 17 times. You cannot do that at any level, and here we are playing at the international level," said Constantine.

Although India were the home side, Turkmenistan seemed to be more at home than the Indians playing in the humid conditions at Kochi.

"We need to take a look at ourselves and see what and how we can get better. Perhaps, we gave more than we had in the match against Iran and maybe, four days later we can't cope with two matches being played after four days," Constantine stated, reported PTI. 

"The GPS suggest that the fitness levels in the second half were considerably down from what we had in the first half but we did not play well in either half," he added.

Indian skipper Sunil Chhetri remained on the bench after returning from injury, and Constantine confirmed that he did not bring him on because he did not want the forward to aggravate the injury.

"I am not the kind of coach to play a player who is injured. He is recovering from an injury that he had for quite some time. I could have easily played him for the last 15 minutes but that would have risked him for the next six months," Constantine said, before signing off.  

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