Soosairaj feels no pressure to make it to final India squad for Kings Cup

Michael Soosairaj, who is part of India's training camp, completed his transfer from Jamshedpur FC to ATK.

Soosairaj was called up to the national camp for the first time in his career.   -  Special Arrangement

Belatedly rewarded for his performance in the domestic circuit, a maiden national camp call-up has not put any pressure on Michael Soosairaj to do anything different to break into the Indian team.

“I have never been called for national camp and this is my first one. I am happy. I don’t have any pressure like I have to perform and take this chance and be in the final squad,” said Soosairaj on the sidelines of the national camp at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.

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New coach Igor Stimac had called 37 players for the camp -- which began on May 21 -- to prepare for the Kings Cup in Thailand. Six players were released on Monday while the remaining 31 will be pruned down to 23.

“I don’t know whether I will be there in the final 23. The competition among the players is very tough, especially in the midfielder. Even if I am not in the final squad, I will still be happy,” said the Tamil Nadu player, who was named as the best midfielder of the I-League in 2017-18 season.

Asked about the style of play Stimac has been emphasising during the camp so far, Soosairaj said, “I love playing this one-touch and two-touch and also combination and coordination.”

Soosairaj played for I-League side Chennai City FC for two seasons (2016-18) before signing up with Indian Super League franchise Jamshedpur FC last season. On Tuesday, he was announced, along with his brother Michael Regin, as the new signings of Kolkata-based ISL side ATK.

“I like the way the ATK people approached us. Moreover, my brother Regin will also be playing with me in ATK. We wanted to play in Kolkata. My brother (Regin) is my idol,” he said.

He also said that senior player Sunil Chhetri motivates everyone to give their best on the field.

“He told me this is my first national camp and don’t put a lot of pressure on my shoulders and be humble on and off the pitch.”

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