Six U-23 footballers in India’s Asian Cup Qualifier squad

New Delhi: As many as six players from Indias AFC U-23 campaign in Doha were on Thursday named in the 24-member squad for Indias upcoming AFC Asian Cup Qualifier match against Macau on September 5.

The squad will be departing for Macau on Friday. India currently stay on top of Group A with six points, courtesy back to back victories against Myanmar and Kyrgyzstan. 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, and has 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 the much needed match practice ahead of our challenge against Macau,” Constantine said.

Legendary footballer I.M. 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.

Squad:
Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Subrata Paul, Albino Gomes.

Defenders: Pritam Kotal, Lalruatthara, Sandesh Jhingan, Anas Edathodika, Arnab Mondal, Salam Ranjan Singh, Narayan Das, Jerry Lalrinzuala.

Midfielders: Udanta Singh, Jackichand Singh, Nikhil Poojary, Eugeneson Lyngdoh, Rowllin Borges, Md. Rafique, Germanpreet Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Halicharan Narzary.

Forwards: Jeje Lalpekhlua, Sunil Chhetri, Robin Singh, Balwant Singh.

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