National Coach Stephen Constantine named a 22-member squad for India’s forthcoming International FIFA Friendly against Jordan slated for Saturday (November 17, 2018). The match will kick-off at IST 10.30pm.
The squad left for Amman in two batches early morning on Wednesday from New Delhi. Nishu Kumar and Jackichand Singh were the two new faces named in the squad from the contingent that had played against China in the last International Friendly in October. The match against China had ended goalless.
National Coach Stephen Constantine mentioned that the forthcoming Friendly against Jordan will “aid India’s preparation” for the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019.
“We want to do well in AFC Asian Cup and the clash against Jordan will aid us. Jordan are a good side and they have a number of good players in their ranks,” he commented.
Jordan, who are ranked 112 in the latest FIFA rankings, lost 1-2 to FIFA World Cup 2018 finalists Croatia in their last Friendly fixture.
The news of recent floods in Jordan did crop up in talk among the players and striker Jeje Lalpekhlua echoed the team needs to “accept it and move ahead.
“There’s nothing one can do about natural calamities. We have to accept it and move ahead. Come what may, we are to play our hearts out and there won’t be any compromise on that,” he stated. “Our prayers stay with the people of Jordan during these tough times.”
Winger Halicharan Narzary, who has been a pivotal member of the Indian National Team said despite the team missing Sunil Chhetri, “there’s no point to sit back and cry over it.”
“Undoubtedly, we are going to miss Sunil-bhai but we can’t just sit back and cry over it. We’ll try our level best to churn out a positive result in Amman,” he pronounced. “The match against China was massive for us. Jordan won’t be anything lesser, if not bigger. We have to keep our heads down and keep working to get something positive out of this tie.”
The Indian team had a stopover in Kuwait City and it has been pouring here too, causing flight delays.
Striker Balwant Singh admitted that such delays “affect the team to some extent.”
“Delayed flights and unregulated delays disturb the routine a bit. But as professional players, it’s our job to cope up with it,” he quipped.
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Jeje Lalpekhlua, Sumeet Passi, Balwant Singh, Manvir Singh