India’s U-17 women’s football team loses 2-4 on penalties to Faroe Islands

India’s U-17 women’s team suffered a painful 2-4 penalty shootout loss to the Faroe Islands after the match ended in a goalless draw in regular time at Strommen Stadium, Norway on Thursday . It was a cautious start to the game as both teams looked to find a stronghold in the middle of the park in the opening rallies.

India had a few corners early on but Shjaila’s crosses into the Faroe Islands box were dealt by the opposing defence. Just over 30 minutes India netted a free kick from close range as defender Naketa fired it towards the top corner only for the opposing goalkeeper to pounce to parry it.

Minutes later, Lynda Kom Serto recovered a stray ball in the attacking third and tried to make room, but was stripped. Nitu Linda took the rebound and slammed her effort directly at the keeper. Dennerby made some changes after half-time, with Kajol Dsouza and Rejiya Devi replacing Neha and Shjaila respectively.

Lynda Kom was in the thick of it again as she nodded a corner kick towards goal but sent her effort away from the whiskers. With around 20 minutes remaining on the clock, India head coach Thomas Dennerby made further changes as Misha and Varshika replaced Lynda Kom and Naketa respectively.

Anita quickly had a good run down the right flank, as she made her way past her marker, entered the box and squared the ball, only for it to be cleared. With less than five minutes of normal time remaining on the clock, an Anita cross from the right found its way to Misha, whose header went just wide.

The referee added four minutes of added time, and in the first of those minutes, Rejiya Devi forced his way to the right in the box, squaring him towards the penalty spot, but his effort was cleared . The game ended in a stalemate with India holding 59% possession of the ball.

The Faroe Islands won the shootout by a 4-2 margin, despite a superb save from Indian goalkeeper Hempriya Seram in the fourth penalty. Nitu Linda and Anita Kumari converted their kicks for India, while efforts from Varshika and Kajol Dsouza were saved. (ANI)

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