Villarreal CF 2 (Sheila Gomez 9’, Nazaret Padron 62’)
NEW DELHI: The Indian Women’s Football Team kicked-off their COITF Cup 2019 campaign with a 0-2 loss at the hands of Spanish side Villarreal CF in Valencia, Spain, on Thursday, August 1, 2019.
Sheila Gomez and Nazaret Padron were the two goalscorers for the Yellow Submarines, while Bala Devi came close to pulling one back for India in the second half.
The Spaniards got off to a quick start, by virtue of a rather scrappy goal from Gomez, who tucked a misjudged clearance by the Indian defence into the near post, after it was crossed in by Sara Hilgado.
India did have a couple of chances to draw level in the first half. The best one came around the half-way mark of the first half, when Sanju Yadav leapt higher than her marker to nod in a corner but saw her header go wide.
India took some initiative after the change of ends, swiftly closing down the opposition back-four. Soon after the restart, the Spaniards gave away a free-kick around 20 yards out. While Sanju provided the decoy run, Ratanbala Devi put her laces through the ball, which was aimed low and hard into the bottom corner. However, it was parried away by the goalkeeper.
Minutes later, goalkeeper Aditi Chauhan pulled off a stunning save off a free-kick by Bea Prades from the edge of the area, to keep the Indians in the hunt.
With a little over 10 minutes of the 70-minutes game to go, Bala Devi had, perhaps the best chance of the game for India, as she surged into the Villarreal box and tucked it past the keeper. Unfortunately, however, it ricocheted off the far post and went out of play.
However, Nazaret secured the scoreline for the Yellow Submarines as she entered the Indian box from the left and slotted it in, with less than eight minutes to go.
India are next set to face Bolivia on Saturday, August 3, 2019, at 11.30 pm IST.
India Starting XI vs Villarreal CF: Aditi Chauhan (GK), Sweety Devi, Ashalata Devi (C), Jabamani Tudu, Sangita Basfore, Ratanbala Devi, Sanju Yadav, Bala Devi, Dangmei Grace, Manisha, Ranjana Chanu
The Indian Women’s Senior National Team defeated Bolivia 3-1 in their second match of the COTIF Cup in Spain on August 03, 2019.
A Ratanbala Devi brace and a Bala Devi goal led the Indian women to a comfortable win over the South American nation despite them taking the lead first through a Sweety Devi own goal.
Coming on the back of a 0-2 loss against Spanish club side Villareal C.F, the Indian women conceded an early goal in the 2nd minute when Sweety Devi put the ball into her own net to give Bolivia the advantage. The lead for Bolivia was shortlived however.
In the 5th minute, Bala Devi gathered the ball around the opponent’s penalty area and slyly controlled it and bundled a volley into the back of the net to leave the opposition goalkeeper tumbling in the wrong direction as India equalized their deficit.
Despite much of India’s dominance in the first half, the scoreline read 1-1 as both teams went into the tunnel on level pegging.
Changing over, the Indian women wasted little time and got right into the thick of action. Ratanbala Devi gave India the lead in the 36th minute when she headed the ball into the opponent’s net after she was found by a cross from the left flank. Shortly after, Ratanbala Devi found her second goal to extend India's lead.
The full-time scoreline read the same as India cruised to a 3-1 win.
India Starting XI: Aditi Chauhan (GK); Sweety Devi, Jabamani Tudu, Ashalata Devi, Sangita Basfore, Ratanbala Devi, Sanju, Bala Devi, Dangmei Grace, Manisha, Ritu Rani
The Indian Women’s Senior National Team thrashed Mauritania 7-0 in their third match of the COTIF Cup on August 04, 2019, a day after defeating Bolivia 3-1.
The Indian women spared little time in formalities and got right into the thick of action. An early strike by Manisha opened the flood gates for the Indian women and Bala Devi capitalized on her opportunity to double India’s lead.
Shortly after, Dangmei Grace scored two goals to take India into the half-time leading by a comfortable scoreline of 4-0.
Ashalata Devi’s brace in the second half followed by Daya Devi’s strike meant that India won the match 7-0.
The Indian Women’s Team’s campaign in the COTIF Cup 2019 came to an end with a 0-2 loss at the hands of Spain U-19 team, who were down to 10 players in Valencia in the wee hours of Thursday morning.
Jana Fernandez and Irene Lopez scored the two goals for the Spaniards, as India wrapped up their group stage with two wins and as many losses from the four games.
The Spain U-19 opened the scoring within the first quarter of an hour through Jana Fernandez, who smashed a belter of a volley from outside the box into the top corner of the Indian goal.
Spain’s joy was short-lived, however, as their keeper Elene Lete Para was sent off after she handled the ball outside the penalty box. The Indians, now with the numerical advantage, launched into the attack, and forward Bala Devi came extremely close to levelling the scores in the 27th minute.
Running on to the through ball from the right side of the box, the 29-year-old put her laces through the ball, aiming for the far post. However, she only managed to send her shot crashing into the upright, as it bounced back into play. Ratanbala was close at hand for the rebound, but she could not react in time to turn it in.
The half-time break came at just the right time for the Spaniards, who were able to recharge their batteries, and rethink their strategies. Asun Martinez had the perfect chance to double their lead after the restart, as she was played in via a delicate through ball that split the Indian defence. While her initial shot hit the crossbar, she made her way back to the ball after another rebound, but managed to strike the same crossbar that had impeded Bala from scoring in the first half.
Soon after, winger Sanju Yadav hit a well-struck free-kick from 30 yards out, but the ball went inches over the Spanish Crossbar.
With eight minutes left on the clock, Spain had the perfect chance to double their lead after Dangmei Grace bundled Asuncion Martinez Salinas over inside the box, as the referee pointed to the spot.
Irene Lopez stepped up to the spot and slotted in the ensuing penalty to make it 2-0 for the Spaniards.
India (Starting XI): Aditi Chauhan (GK), Sweety Devi, Jabamani Tudu, Ashalata Devi (C), Sangita Basfore, Sanju, Ratanbala Devi, Bala Devi, Manisha, Ranjana Chanu, Ritu Rani.