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No room for mistake against SL, says Houstan

IANS
Aug 26, 2009 at 05:17pm IST

New Delhi: Indian football coach Bob Houghton said that his boys couldn't afford to commit any mistakes against Sri Lanka in their must-win ONGC Nehru Cup football tournament match in the Capital on Wednesday.

Both teams will be looking for a victory to stay alive in the tournament as each has three points from two games.

A win against Sri Lanka will brighten India's chances of making the final and Houghton is keen on gaining full points from the match.

GET, SET AND GO: The coach is counting on Bhaichung Bhutia and Sunil Chettri for Wednesday's match.

"We can't afford to make any mistakes against Sri Lanka. We had a good match against Kyrgyzstan but in the last 20 minutes our defence was shaky," Houghton told reporters after the team's practice session in Delhi on Tuesday.

Houghton is well aware that the speed of the young Sri Lankan team can trouble India and said that Surkumar Singh will replace Dipak Mondal as the right-back.

"Sri Lankans play fast and we have to be very careful against them. Surkumar is fast and hopefully he can make an impact," said Houghton.

India, however, will be depending heavily on the striking pair of Bhaichung Bhutia and Sunil Chettri.

"I am happy that both the guys have found their rhythm. Sunil's recovery from the ankle injury has been good and Bhaichung is also doing well," said Houghton.

Sri Lanka coach Sampath Pereira complained that his team is not getting enough rest between matches.

"We will be playing three matches in five days. It is not enough for our boys. But we will try to put up a better show," he said.

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