1-1 and 2-3 to India
The Malaysian national team lost 2-3 in the second and final international friendly football match against India at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata on Wednesday (16/11/11).
Malaysia and India drew 1-1 in the first match on Sunday (13/11/11)
For India the win was a gift for coach Savio Medeira amd a grand debut for Rahim Nabi as captain and also about Jeje Laipekhlua’s coming of age, post Baichung Bhutia era.
Jeje scored one and could have struck more, but his combination with Sunil Chhetri – who hit a brace - - was all about potency and promise. The visitors tried to fight back through Safee Sali, who scored a brace too, but it was not enough to spoil India's party.
In a bid to test all his players before launching the title-defence of SAFF Cup in a fortnight's time in New Delhi, Medeira carried out a comprehensive change in the starting line-up' with just three from the first match in Guwahati - Chhetri, Gourmangi Singh and Nabi - making the cut here.
Nabi was given the captain's armband. There was neither Steven Dias Climax Lawrence while Mahesh Gawli, captain of the last match, was required only as a substitute. It's' however, the new-look midfield of Francis Fernandes, Baldeep Singh, Rocus Lamare and Lalrindika Ralte - all young and braveheart, who stood out.
The Malaysian side were cautious in their approach, perhaps taking time to acclimatize on the artificial turf. But from the hosts' perspective, it was a continuation of the fightback which saw them rally to hold Malaysians 1-1 on Sunday.