Suresh Singh: 'Can't wait for the Under-17 WC to begin'

Whatever fate holds for Suresh and his team, one thing is for sure: this group is on the cusp of making history in a tournament that has seen the likes of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Iker Casillas and more take their baby steps under the spotlight.

"We are in a tough group but our first objective is to win the first game," India U-17 captain Suresh Singh said ahead of the FIFA U-17 World Cup scheduled to start from October 6.   -  Special Arrangement

Come October 6, India will be hosting the FIFA Under-17 World Cup - its first-ever FIFA event.  And midfielder Suresh Singh Wangjam will play an important role. “As a player I can’t expect anything more than just being part of a World Cup. The best players in the world will be participating and we will give everything in the tournament.”

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While Suresh says he isn’t nervous ahead of making history – he is excited for the World Cup and can’t wait for it to begin - and his team has its work cut out. India is paired in Group A with two-time champion Ghana, South American powerhouse Colombia, which finished third at this year’s South American U-17 Championship, and USA, which has participated in 15 of the 16 editions of the U-17 WC, having only missed out in 2013.

“Yes, we are in a tough group but our first objective is to win the first game. We are ready to face any team in the tournament but we will take it one game at a time,” the skipper said.

This isn’t the team’s first official international tournament, however. India hosted last year’s AFC U-16 Championship in Goa, but was unable to make use of home advantage. The team, which was under Nicolai Adam’s tutelage, was knocked out in the group stage after finishing third. 

Now under the guidance of Luis Norton de Matos, the U-17 side is raring to go. “We are not nervous ahead of the tournament, we are very excited. The team has learnt a lot from the coach. He is a very good person and he understands us boys. We love to train under him,” the Manipur teen signed off.

Whatever fate holds for Suresh and his team, one thing is for sure: this group is on the cusp of making history in a tournament that has seen the likes of Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta, Iker Casillas and more take their baby steps under the spotlight.

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