By Abhishek Shukla
NAVI MUMBAI: Paraguay were on the winning end of a scintillating FIFA U-17 World Cup India 2017 match against Mali in Group B with Alan Rodriguez converting the winning penalty in the second half.
Paraguay started with couple of attacks and Antonio Galeano scored the goal in 12th minute after Paraguay won free kick just on sidelines.
Paraguay continued their attack against listless Mali’s defense. Leonardo Sanchez scored a stunner in 17th minute to double the lead for South American side.
Hadji Drame scored for Mali and gave African side a relief in 20th minute of play. Hajid again created a chance in next minute but efforts was not on target. Mali’s captain, Mohamed Camara had a chance in 25th minute but he was off target with his shot on goal.
Mali pulled their socks up and attacked several times with most closed one came in when Lassana Ndiaye hit the cross bar in 30th minute.
Nonetheless, Ndiaye gave his side equalizer four minutes later with a magnificent goal.
Back to back corners in 37th minute for Paraguay scared Mali’s defense but couldn’t get past goal post.
At half time Paraguay was held at 2-2 by energetic Mali.
Second half started with Mali making first attempt on goal but Diego Huesca save it. For next 10 minutes both team rumbled in middle of the pitch.
Paraguay won the Penalty in 54th minute because of Hand ball by Mali player in defense. Alan Rodriguez successfully took the penalty and gave his side a lead in 55th minute. Mali got the chance to equalize again in 62nd minute with Hadji shooting over the bar.
Mali and Paraguay both had their chances throughout the second half with Diemoussa Traore had a good run in Paraguay’s box but shot just over the post.
Paraguay showed good defensive play after the lead and Mali failed to capitalized many chances they got throughout the second half as South American nation made sure that they win that match and top the group after the first matchday after New Zealand and Turkey played to a 1-1 draw.
Photo Credits: FIFA