Igor Stimac announces 25-member squad for international friendlies in Bahrain

Seven players have received their maiden call-up – Prabhshukhan Gill, Hormipam Ruivah, Anwar Ali, Roshan Singh, VP Suhair, Danish Farooq, and Aniket Yadav.

Igor Stimac: "We are playing Bahrain and Belarus, and they are better-ranked sides than us. But whatever the rankings are, you need to do it on the pitch."   -  AP

Indian men's football team head coach Igor Stimac has announced a 25-member squad for the back-to-back international friendlies in Bahrain. The Blue Tigers will play Bahrain on March 23 and Belarus on March 26. Both matches will begin at 9.30 pm IST.

Seven players have received their maiden call-up – Prabhshukhan Gill, Hormipam Ruivah, Anwar Ali, Roshan Singh, VP Suhair, Danish Farooq, and Aniket Yadav.

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“We are playing Bahrain and Belarus, and they are better-ranked sides than us. But whatever the rankings are, you need to do it on the pitch. Bahrain will show us where we stand. We will give chances to some young players who have played well in the Hero ISL this season to see how much we can use them for the qualifiers in June,” Stimac said.

The international friendlies are part of the team’s preparation for the final round of the AFC Asian Cup China 2023 qualifying matches, which will be held in Kolkata from June 8 onwards. India has been clubbed in Group D along with Hong Kong, Afghanistan and Cambodia. Twenty-four teams have been divided into six groups, and the group winners and the five best second-placed teams will earn a ticket to the Asian Cup in China.

GOALKEEPERS: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Amrinder Singh, Prabhsukhan Gill.

DEFENDERS: Pritam Kotal, Seriton Fernandes, Rahul Bheke, Hormipam Ruivah, Sandesh Jhingan, Anwar Ali, Chinglensana Singh, Subhasish Bose, Akash Mishra, Roshan Singh.

MIDFIELDERS: Bipin Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Pronay Halder, Jeakson Singh, Brandon Fernandes, VP Suhair, Danish Farooq, Yasir Mohammad, Aniket Jadhav.

FORWARDS: Manvir Singh, Liston Colaco, Rahim Ali.

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