Six players from India’s AFC U-23 Championship qualifying campaign in Doha were named in the 24-member senior national team squad for India’s forthcoming AFC Asian Cup qualifier against Macau on September 5. The squad will be departing for Macau from Mumbai via Bangkok on Friday (September 1).
India currently stay on top of Group A with 6 points, courtesy back to back victories against Myanmar and the Kyrgyz Republic.
However, National Coach Stephen Constantine felt there is “no reason to underestimate Macau as a team.”
“Macau will be playing at home and in front of their home crowd. There’s always a marked difference between playing at home and playing an away match but we are aware of the challenge,” Constantine said on arrival.
The team has been camping in Mumbai since August 12, 2017 during which they played two international matches against Mauritius and St. Kitts and Nevis in the Hero Tri-Nation Football Series as part of the preparation.
“The matches provided us with the much-needed match practice ahead of our challenge against Macau,” Constantine mentioned.
Legendary footballer IM Vijayan who will also be travelling to Macau as an observer said the “team looks to be in great shape.”
“The body language is positive but ahead of such matches, there’s always a tendency of taking it a bit lightly against lower ranked opponents. The boys need to keep working hard on the ground against Macau,” he stated.
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