Keeping in mind India’s participation in the forthcoming 2014 Incheon Asian Games, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) has arranged for two exposure tours to the Czech Republic and China respectively for the Indian Men’s Under-23 national team. The squad of 30 is presently training in Bangalore under national coach Wim Koevermans in the camp which kicked-off on July 1.
A 25-member squad will be leaving for a tour to Czech Republic on July 21 and returning back on August 8. The Indian squad will play three matches during the period against three different clubs – SK Senco Doubravka, FK Baník Most and TJ Jiskra Domažlice. The India U-23 team will be based in Pilsen.
Kushal Das, AIFF General Secretary, felt the tours will help the team prepare better for the Games. “All India Football Federation believes in providing the best of facilities to all teams and hence, we have organised for back-to-back exposure tours for the India’s Asian Games squad for them to prepare in the best possible fashion,” he told AIFF Media.
National coach Wim Koevermans stated it was important the boys “adapt playing against different styles”.
“The boys need to play against different styles, learn about strong opposition and build on from there,” he maintained.
Besides the exposure tour to the Czech Republic, the squad will also be travelling to China for another exposure tour from August 25 – September 8 from where the squad will be leaving directly for South Korea. The Indian squad will be playing two matches in China, against Shanghai Greenland FC and Jiangsu Guoxin-Sainty FC.
Sunil Chhetri, Robin Singh and Francis Fernandes are the three senior players who have been named in the squad. The rest of the squad comprise of Under-23 players.
INDIA U-23 PROBABLES
Amrinder Singh, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Ravi Kumar, Kamaljit Singh
Pritam Kotal, Keenan Almeida, Deepak Devrani, Joyner Lourenco, Shankar Sampingiraj, Sandesh Jhingan, Sanjay Balmuchu, Salam Singh, Narayan Das, Shouvik Ghosh
Pronoy Halder, Rowlin Borges, Clifton Dias, Alwyn George, Siam Hangal, Lalrindika Ralte, Dhanpal Ganesh, Milan Singh, Francis Fernandes, Romeo Fernandes, Alesh Sawant
Seiminlen Doungel, Sunil Chhetri, Robin Singh, Haokip Thongkoshim, Mandar Rao Desai
(Report & Picture courtesy AIFF Media)