Despite the comeback of star striker Sunil Chhetri to their ranks, India has a difficult job when they play higher-ranked Jordan in an international football friendly encounter here on Saturday.
Chhetri, 37, last appeared for India in the SAFF Championships final in October 2021, when they defeated Nepal 3-0. He has since been inactive owing to injury.
The match is India’s final warm-up for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers, which begin on June 8 in Kolkata.
Jordan is ranked 91st in FIFA, whereas India is ranked 106th.
“One game against a stronger squad always would assist,” current coach Igor Stimac said of the team who arrived here on Wednesday.
Stimac added, “This is our final friendly game before qualifying, and we need final answers on a few questions.” “Some of our young people will have an excellent opportunity to obtain foreign experience,” he continued.
The group has been in a training camp for almost a month, first in Bellary, Karnataka, and then in Kolkata, and the coach stated that his players’ fitness levels are “very excellent.”
“We have another ten days (before the Asian Cup qualifiers) and everything should be OK.” “The boys did an outstanding effort and deserve to be rewarded with solid Qualifiers outcomes.”
“Jordan are ranked higher than Belarus (FIFA Ranking 93), but they are not as physical as Belarus,” the coach stated of the opponent squad. So the create and ball control should be a little simpler for us.” The ‘Blue Tigers’ had previously played against Belarus during the FIFA International window in March, losing 0-3.
The ATK Mohun Bagan people who played the preliminary camp due to their club obligations in the AFC Cup have joined the Indian team.
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