SAFF U-19 women's championship: India leaves for Bangladesh

The India U-19 side has been training in Goa to prepare for the tournament and head coach Alex Ambrose believes that the camp will help the players adapt better.

Football

REPRESENTATIVE IMAGE: The India U-19 side has been training in Goa to prepare for the SAFF women's football championship.   -  REUTERS

A 23-member India under-19 women's football team on Wednesday left for Bangladesh to participate in the SAFF championship beginning later this month.

The India U-19 side has been training in Goa to prepare for the tournament and head coach Alex Ambrose believes that the camp will help the players adapt better.

"We have been training in Goa, and the girls have been adapting to all the situations here," said Ambrose in a release.

"It's a tough time for everyone in the world and we got the opportunity to train and play for which I am happy. We certainly want to do well and the federation is supporting us so that we can live up to a certain expectation." The U-19 side is a relatively new team with a few players who have already been in the national team fold.

Ambrose believes that playing in SAFF will help the girls understand the level of football played in the international arena.

READ | Women's National Football Championship: Manipur looks to defend crown against Railways in final

"It's a new team and everyone is excited to play a good brand of football. Playing competitive teams will help acclimatise them, and gain an understanding of international football. The players need to believe in themselves and play good football," he said.

"It will help the girls prepare themselves to deal with tough situations. Expectations are always there, but we are here to play good football.

"There is absolutely no pressure on the players. We just want them to perform well, enjoy their football and have a good championship."

India is slated to play Sri Lanka on December 13, before taking on Bhutan on December 15, Bangladesh on December 17 and Nepal on December 19 in a round-robin format.

The top two sides will face each other in the final, which will take place on December 22.

SQUAD

Goalkeepers: Anshika, Adrija Sarkhel, Manju Ganjhu

Defenders: Astam Oraon, Nisha, Nirmala Devi, Purnima Kumari, Shilky Devi, Ritu Devi, Kritina Devi

Midfielders: Poonam, Nitu Linda, Babina Devi, Santosh, Priyangka Devi, Mariyammal Balamurugan, Anju

Forwards: Karen Estrocio, Amisha Baxla, Lynda Kom Serto, Sumati Kumari, Apurna Narzary, Santhiya Nadupatti Venugadajalam

Head Coach: Alex Mario Ambrose

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