U-17 World Cup: Crunch game for Mali and Turkey


Sparks will fly in the crunch clash between Mali and Turkey here at the D.Y. Patil Stadium on Monday.

After losing the first game to Paraguay, Mali will be chasing a win at all costs.

Mali was fortunate to have a coach like Jonas Komla, who believes in blunt assessment. “Over-enthusiasm from the players cost us. We will look to work on that aspect in the games to come.”

He said heat or humidity was not a factor in the opening game. “There is plenty of room for improvement, but am happy with the strong mentality of my players. We began in a similar way in the AFCON but went on to win the competition.”

Turkey coach Mehmet Hacioeglu manages a group of professionals, for whom adapting to conditions comes with the job.

Turkey will be pinning its hopes on FC Schalke striker Ahmed Kutucu, who can single-handedly finish games.

New Zealand coach Danny Hay was a worried man. Finding a replacement for skipper Max Mata, who is suspended for the match against Paraguay, was not an easy one. Paraguay coach and World Cupper Gustavo Morinigo will use all his experience to break down the Kiwis. The South Americans will be playing a waiting game until they find space in the opposition box.

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