A new match, a new look team; the fate nevertheless stayed the same. India went down to Azerbaijan 0-3 in the second international friendly played at the Rugby 7s Stadium in Dubai.
Like it happened in the last match against Oman, India conceded as early as the 3rd minute. Goalkeeper Subhasis Roychowdhury's faulty clearance fell to a roving Nidirov Vugar who blasted it in from the top of the box.
The second goal came two minutes prior to the interval. This time, Mahir Shukurov was brought down inside the box by Raju Gaikwad, who was flashed the yellow card. Shukurov gleefully converted from the spot.
Hasiyev Nizami scored Azerbaijan's third goal in the 82nd minute.
The Indians weren't able to overcome the setback of conceding an early goal. In the first half, there wasn't much cohesion in the midfield and the back-four were kept busy all throughout.
Changing ends, there was a bit more purpose in the midfield. A Francis Fernandes cross saw Kamran palming away a Joaquim Abranches' header in the 52nd minute.
Azerbaijan pressed hard and were eventually rewarded with their third goal in 82nd minute.
The Indian Team wore black armbands as a matter of respect to the legendary Former India Captain Sailendra Nath Manna who passed away on Monday morning. A minute's silence was also observed on the field prior to the kick-off.
This was India's last preparatory match ahead of their campaign in the AFC Challenge Cup to be held in Kathmandu in March.
India play Tajikistan in their first match at the AFC Challenge Cup on March 9.