India suffered a 0-2 defeat to Jordan in an international football friendly on Saturday as the return of talisman Sunil Chhetri did not prove to be enough for the Blue Tigers. (More Football News)
The 91st-ranked West Asian side left it late as Monther Abu Amara (75th minute) and Abu Zraiq (90+4) found the net while India, placed at 106th in the FIFA rankings, barely managed a shot on target at the Qatar Sports Club.
India, who are preparing for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup final round qualifiers, will take on Cambodia on June 8 in Kolkata in a Group D match. The match was India's last preparatory outing ahead of the Asian Cup Qualifiers.
Having gone into the breather goal-less, substitute Monther Abu Amara put Jordan in front when he found the top corner of the net with a first time shot from the edge of the 18-yard-box.
Abu Amara then turned provider as he received the ball from Mohammad Abu Zraiq and then pushed it back to the latter, whose attempt went past Indian custodian Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, who was left with barely any support at the back.
The higher ranked team in the match, Jordan looked marginally better than the Indian side going forward with Sandhu called into action late in the half to thwart a delivery that bounced just in front of him.
To start with, Jordan created the first two chances of the game -- a free-kick and a shot -- but both went wide. Even as Jordan looked to score, the Indian defence stood firm. Jordan came closest to scoring in the first half when forward Mahmoud Almardi's volley landed on top of the net.
But in the end, India suffered yet another defeat in the international area. The 37-year-old Chhetri last played for India during their 3-0 win over Nepal in the SAFF Championships final in October 2021.