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SAFF Cup 2018: Maldives beats India to clinch title

Maldives clinched the 2018 SAFF Cup after stunning India 2-1 in the final at the Bangabandhu National Stadium in Dhaka on Saturday.

Defending champions India went into the final as favourites, having the psychological advantage of having beaten Maldives 2-0 in their Group B clash earlier in the tournament.

Maldives, meanwhile only advanced past the group stage after winning a coin toss against Sri Lanka to secure second spot in Group A.

Head coach Petar Segrt, however, had promised a fighting performance from his team and that is exactly what Maldives produced as Ibrahim Mahudhee Hussain scored with a right-footed shot from the centre of the box in the 19th minute.

It was the first goal India, represented by their U-23 team, had conceded in the tournament and it stung them into action but Maldives were solid in defence as they held on to their lead going into the break.

They continue to frustrate India in the second half and Ali Fasir gave them more room to breathe when he scored Maldives’ second in the 66th minute.

India threw men forward to salvage the final but Sumit Passi’s goal in added time came too late as Maldives secured the 2018 SAFF Cup title.

Source: Lagardere Sports

Source: Dailly News

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