Manvir Singh, the hero of Indian Football in last night’s match, scored the only goal of the game against Kuwait in the FIFA World Cup 2026 Qualifiers, which will be going to give them massive confidence in the future. It was one of the most important matches for India to take them one step closer to the World Cup qualification.
India coach Igor Stimac made some bold changes to his starting line-up, dropping Lallianzuala Chhangte and Mehtab Singh, and bringing in Naorem Mahesh Singh, Rahul Bheke, and Apuia Ralte. The move paid off as India matched Kuwait toe-to-toe in a cagey first half that saw few clear-cut chances for either side. Sunil Chhetri came closest to breaking the deadlock when he volleyed over the bar from Nikhil Poojary’s cross.
The game changed after the break when Stimac introduced Chhangte for Mahesh, adding pace and flair to India’s attack. The winger made an instant impact, setting up Manvir for the only goal of the game in the 64th minute. Chhangte sprinted down the left flank and cut back a perfect pass for Manvir, who slotted home with a clinical left-footed finish.
India defended resolutely after taking the lead, with Gurpreet Singh Sandhu making a crucial save to deny Mohammed Abdullah. Kuwait’s frustration boiled over in stoppage time when Faisal Al Harbi was sent off for two quick bookings, leaving India with a numerical advantage. The final whistle sparked jubilant scenes among the Indian players and staff, who celebrated a historic win over a higher-ranked opponent.
India won two out of the two last matches against Kuwait. First, they won against them in the SAFF Championship, and now in the FIFA World Cup Qualifiers with an amazing defensive performance, which clearly shows that India has been improving every time they step on the pitch.
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