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FIFA World Cup Qualifiers

How many times have India defeated Kuwait in the past?

Published at :May 26, 2024 at 5:11 PM
Modified at :May 26, 2024 at 5:11 PM
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Uttiyo Sarkar

India have faced Kuwait a total of six times.

The Indian football team will be back in action on June 6 when they host Kuwait in a crucial FIFA World Cup Qualifiers clash at the Salt Lake Stadium, Kolkata. The Blue Tigers need to win this match to have a strong chance of moving into the third round of the qualification.

Fortunately for the Blue Tigers, they actually have a pretty solid record against Kuwait over their meetings over the last few decades. India have played Kuwait on six occasions in their history, with the first meeting dating way back to the 1978 Asian Games. The Blue Tigers suffered a poor 6-1 loss back then.

India’s first win over Kuwait came in an international friendly game on 5 November 2004. The Blue Tigers managed to produce an impressive fight to defeat the Blue Wave on their own home turf, with goals coming from Abhishek Yadav, Tomba Singh, and Jerry Zirsanga. Zirsanga set the record for becoming India’s youngest-ever goal-scorer in an international match, scoring his first goal at the age of 16 years and 311 days.

India suffered a horrible loss to Kuwait in the Bob Houghton era. In a friendly before the 2011 AFC Asian Cup, the Blue Tigers were battered 9-1. However, India’s record against the West Asian national team has significantly improved since then.

The Blue Tigers faced Kuwait twice in the 2023 SAFF Championship, which was held in Bengaluru. India almost defeated Kuwait in their group stage game itself after Sunil Chhetri gave his side the lead with a well-taken goal. But an unfortunate own goal from Anwar Ali in the dying moments of the match allowed the visitors to snatch a point from the fixture.

However, India have a solid record against Kuwait in their last two competitive outings. The Blue Tigers defeated the Blue Wave in the SAFF Championship final. The final was forced to a penalty shootout after an eventful goalless draw, and India won the shootout by a 6-5 margin to lift the trophy.

But India’s most notable win over Kuwait came last year in the first 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifier. The Blue Tigers produced a fantastic defensive display and Manvir Singh’s winner helped them get their first win of the World Cup qualifiers second round. India have won three of their six matches against Kuwait so far. And now, they’ll be gunning for their fourth victory (and third straight win) over the visitors in what is expected to be a dramatic clash on June 6.

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