India sit at the top of the Group A standings at the 2019 Asian Cup after their memorable win over Thailand on Sunday evening at the Al Nahyan Stadium, Abu Dhabi.
Sunil Chhetri bagged a brace in India's opening AFC Asian Cup Group A game against Thailand and in the process, surpassed Lionel Messi to become the second highest active goalscorer in global football.
The prolific striker put India back in front immediately after the interval, before further goals from Anirudh Thapa and substitute Jeje Lalpekhlua furthered India's advantage. "We played 18 games, blood, sweat and tears, pre-qualifiers and qualifiers". We don't go into a match expecting to win 4-1 or 5-1.
The humiliating loss to India in the Asian Cup has resulted in Thailand head coach Milovan Rajevac's sacking but the Serb was effusive in his praise for the Stephen Constantine-coached side.
United Arab Emirates' Ahmed Khalil scored a penalty two minutes from full time to spare their blushes as the hosts secured a fortuitous 1-1 draw with Bahrain in the opening game of the 2019 Asian Cup on Saturday. "Tomorrow morning, we train again", Constantine added.
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"We came here to qualify and I think it's time we are no longer looking at India as we were", he said.
"We will correct all the mistakes and learn lessons from them for the next game against India and hopefully the performance will be better". We should look to hit them on the counter.
"The main thing was to make the most of our chances and that we did today".
The AFC Asian Cup opening match has not always seen the host have it easy, as there have been instances where we saw the host nation stunned on their home turf.