Warm welcome for Sanjeev, Hendry

He may not be in the spotlight as much as India’s first goalscorer at a FIFA tournament -- Jeakson Singh -- but Sanjeev Stalin can’t be denied a spot in folklore after providing the assist as India struck against Colombia in their Group A game at the FIFA Under-17 World Cup.

The moment celebrated by millions is something that will not be forgotten in a rush and Sanjeev believes it was his communication with Jeakson that led to the goal.

“Jeakson and I had great communication between us and that is what eventually led to that goal being scored. It was the best moment of our lives,” Sanjeev said. Sanjeev and the other Bengalurean in the Indian team, Hendry Anthony were felicited in Murphy Town on Sunday.

Despite a herculean effort to equalise against the South American powerhouse, India went on to lose the game 2-1. But it is all about the goal for Stalin.

“It was hard to lose the game but that goal will definitely strengthen Indian football. It was something we now consider our ‘luckiest minute’.”

Despite not featuring in any of the games, Hendry was beaming about how it felt when Jeakson’s header found the back of the net.

“He (Jeakson) is an inspiration for all of us now. Despite not featuring, I will recollect the goal fondly. It was a great experience for all of us.”

The duo also echoed similar ambitions of pushing themselves to go on and play for the senior side in the near future.

The goal was the highlight of India’s performance at the World Cup. Beginning the campaign with a spirited show against the USA in a 3-0 loss, the Indian colts were edged out by Colombia before going down 4-0 to Ghana and exiting the tournament.

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