With the 30 probables starting to drop into the preparatory camp in New Delhi for India's forthcoming match against Jordan, the players in unison stated that the match will be an “invaluable experience” for the team’s preparation for the AFC Asian Cup in UAE in January.
The match, the first-ever international friendly between the two countries is slated to be played in Amman on Saturday.
Goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, labelled Jordan as a “very strong team.”
"The fact that Jordan are regulars in Asian Cup underlines that the match isn’t going to be easy for us. This is going to be a very tough challenge and we need such challenges to better our performances,” he said.
Jordan, which lost to World Cup runner-up Croatia 1-2 in its last match has qualified to the quarterfinals of the AFC Asian Cup twice in 2004 and in 2011.
Sandesh Jhingan, who earned huge plaudits for his valiant display away to PR China in a friendly last month, felt that playing against Jordan will provide the team a “better idea” of UAE, which is clubbed with India in the Asian Cup.
"They are a physical side and a team from the Arabian region whose style of game is quite similar to Bahrain and UAE. It'll be an added advantage for us closer to the tournament,” Jhingan stated.
Pronay Halder, who played a pivotal role in the midfield against China, recollected his memory of playing against Jordan in the 2014 Asian Games in Incheon.
"We still remember playing them in the 2014 Asian Games. They have always been tough as opponents. The experience of playing against such respected sides will come handy in the Asian Cup,” he maintained.
"We will be in a better position to assess ourselves after this game. As a team we are more confident now and it helps while facing strong opponents in the bigger stage,” he quipped.
The Stephen Constantine-coached Indian team is scheduled to depart for Jordan on Thursday.
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