Four FC Goa players, namely Laxmikant Kattimani, Narayan Das, Pronay Halder and Romeo Fernandes have been selected in the 25-member India squad to face Guam in a 2018 FIFA World Cup and 2019 AFC Asian Cup Preliminary Joint Qualifier on November 12, 2015.
As part of the country’s battle to make it to the next round of 2018 World Cup qualifiers and also earn a slot in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, and since the start of the Indian Super League (ISL) Season 2, the Indian national team coach Stephen Constantine has selected Narayan and Pronay in the last two away matches against Turkmenistan and Oman.
FC Goa goalkeeper Kattimani has certainly caught the attention of Constantine with his good showing in the ISL so far while the Blue Tigers’ gaffer has also added the name of right winger Romeo Fernandes for the next match.
“I thank the coach (Constantine) for having faith in me. I have been working hard in the ISL for FC Goa and I will be more than willing to give my best for the country,” said the custodian, who has fond memories of representing in the India U-23 team at the 2010 Asian Games and yet to make his senior team debut.
Romeo Fernandes got three starts in seven matches under Zico with FC Goa in this season’s ISL but the Goan posterboy always vows to give his best. He commented, “Whenever I play, if it is for my club or country, I want to give my best.”
“It (qualification) is tough but we will fight till the end,” added Halder who has been on the bench for the last two matches. Meanwhile, Narayan had some game time and stated, “National team duty is always special for us.”
The squad will assemble in Bengaluru on November 8, 2015 for the upcoming match against Guam that will be played at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru with a kick-off of 19.00 IST, with India yet to face Iran (away) and Turkemistan (home) on March 24 and 29 in the next year respectively.