XtraTime Web Desk: Sunil Chhetri surprised at Stephen Constantine’s decision to resign at the end of the final game against Bahrain in which India lost 0-1.
India finished at bottom of the table of group A and failed to qualify for the round of 16.
“We didn’t know before the game. He spoke to us and told it in the press conference. He did really well for the country. If you see the records, the number of boys he has given chances. I just want to thank him from me and the whole boys for doing a great job and just hope wherever he goes, wish him all the luck,” said the 34-year-old.
“I am disappointed and angry. I don’t think we played the same way we played the first two games. It tells you that in this level there is no 95 percent. We have got to give 100 percent every game. Although we did defend well, we defended too much. We should have kept the ball more. Sometimes when you just need a draw, this is what happens,” he mentioned.
According to him, India didn’t play for a point against the West Asians as he said, “We weren’t (going for a draw). It was in the back of the mind though. As the game went by, around 70-75 minutes if we keep it like that and so we defended more deeper. 89th minute penalty doesn’t happen but it is one of those days,”
“When you allow every cross to come in, there will be desperation. How many are you going to save? We needed to have more guts and needed to calm down. They were desperate. They had two men behind the ball and if we strung three-four passes, it would have been two versus two. We didn’t think that time and just kept defending and everything wrong that could have happened, happened,” he further explained.
Really proud of our @IndianFootball team achievements over the last 4 years and appreciative of all of the support from the AIFF, the players, our support staff and the wonderful fans. Jai Hind!
— StephenConstantine (@StephenConstan) January 15, 2019
Sunil also feels India should go to the next round based on their performance.
“With our last performance, we at least deserve to qualify,” he said.
“It was mental too because if you keep giving the ball, it is not easy to defend for 90 minutes. So, at some point, we had to be brave and keep the ball like we threatened UAE. We have more chances than them. Today we had only one or two half chances. It was easy for them. It is something we learn and hope we become better after this,” he signed off.