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India beat Lebanon in AFC U-16 qualifier

November 02, 2007 11:26 IST

India brightened its chances of qualifying for the AFC Under-16 football championship by beating Lebanon 3-0 at Dammam in Saudi Arabia.

Deepak Devrani found the net twice while Manandeep scored once to seal victory at the Prince Saud Bin Jelawi Stadium on Thursday.

Lebanon had been India's bugbear in recent times with the national team winning in the first round of World Cup qualifiers and Lebanese club Al Nejmeh getting the better of Mahindra United in the AFC Cup quarter-finals.

But the Indian youngsters prevailed in a match that saw two Lebanese sent off. Substitute Omar El Kurdi got a direct red card in the 76th minute while Hadi Sahmarani got two yellow cards in the 85th and 91st minutes before being served the marching orders.

Deepak gave India an early lead in the ninth minute with Manandeep adding a goal in the 47th. Deepak scored his second in the 64th minute.

India now have seven points from three matches in Group C having beaten Sri Lanka 6-0 and drawn with Iraq 2-2 in their previous matches.

They next play Saudi Arabia on November 4 and Bhutan on November 7 in a bid to qualify for the AFC U-16 championship to be held next year.

The hosts lead the group after winning their first three matches while Iraq is second after routing Bhutan 11-0.

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