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Indian girls eyeing point against Brazil

Head coach Thomas Dennerby now wants his girls to be more pragmatic with the ball while building their attacks against the most feared footballing South American country.

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Bhubaneswar: India will have the final and last chance to etch out its name in the point table as the host nation in the FIFA World Cup under-17 women’s football championship when they take on Brazil in the last group A play here at Kalinga Stadium on Monday.

Head coach Thomas Dennerby now wants his girls to be more pragmatic with the ball while building their attacks against the most feared footballing South American country.

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“When we have the ball, we need to feel relaxed and start playing. We need to be confident and play a little bit more. Now, we have nothing to lose. I hope the girls start playing freely,” said Dennerby on the eve of the match.

India is already out of the World Cup having lost their first two group league encounters against the United State (0-8) and Morocco (0-3), the North African country is also a debutante like the hosts.

Brazil edged past Morocco 1-0 in the opener and drew 1-1 against the USA.

India needs to improve in all sections of the game from goal-scoring in the frontline to goal-saving in the post.

“We have to focus very hard on defending, but we also know football is not only about defending. It would be nice for us to score in the tournament,” he said.

“Hopefully we can have another good performance. Brazil is a good team. And we also know that Brazil is fighting to ensure its place in the knockout stage. So, I think they are going to come out all guns blazing,” the coach added.

“We will fight and try to score a goal. It would be nice to come out of this tournament with a goal,” he said. “We have worked on the final crucial pass – the actions around the opponents’ box. That is also the hardest part in football–to learn exactly how to handle that kind of situation.”

“The girls need to have a better understanding of decision making – we also have to work a little bit with the skills in those crucial moments, because in the end the result of all games are decided in the two boxes,” the Swedish coach said.

“The playing style of this team is similar. Of course, they are not that skillful yet, but it is normal when you are 17. I will say it’s even tougher to play against the youth team because, in a senior team, you have the best players from your country. When you play the age group, you have to pick up players from a particular age group only,” he said.

The match will kick off at 8 pm IST.

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