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Hung Thinh Championship: Coach Igor Stimac optimistic about India winning Hung Thinh c’ship

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Hung Thinh Championship : Football Tournament : Ahead of the Hung Thinh Friendly Football Tournament, which will see India play friendlies against Vietnam and Singapore, head coach Igor Stimac is optimistic about these two competitions and feels his team has a good chance of winning the tournament. India’s matches at the event, starting from September 21, are against Singapore on September 24 and Vietnam on September 27. Follow Hung Thinh Championship live updates with InsideSport.IN

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Hung Thinh Championship: Coach Igor Stimac optimistic about India winning Hung Thinh c’ship

The Blue Tigers will go into the Hung Thinh Friendly Football Tournament full of confidence and on a three-match winning streak. “We are definitely capable of winning the tournament, but I think it’s the little things that will decide who wins it. Obviously, Vietnam have had a lot of momentum with their performances in the last few years.

They have a good team and are playing at home, so they are probably the favourites, but we also have a good chance as we have a young squad,” said India head coach Igor Stimac.

“I think we have enough quality to match them and if we stay positive and play with a good mindset we can do it,” he continued. While confidence in the squad is high, Stimac was wary of the fact that most of his players are still in pre-season mode right now and that rotation would be the order of the day for the Blue Tigers.

“It’s a good challenge for us, although we have to make sure we combine and rotate our players in a proper way. We have to make sure nobody gets injured because most of the players we have are still in pre-season mode and they need to be nurtured. We need to be careful because we are facing two sides that are in full swing of competitions,” said the coach.

However, the Indian football team has enough momentum not to be too worried about it at the moment, believes the 55-year-old.
“In terms of the momentum we have after the AFC Asian Cup Qaulifiers in June (India beat Cambodia, Afghanistan and Hong Kong in back-to-back matches), optimism is high and the positivity currently surrounding the team should only promise well. for us,” said Stimac.

Hung Thinh Championship: Coach Igor Stimac optimistic about India winning Hung Thinh c’ship

While a few new faces are currently in the Blue Tigers squad, the head coach has not closed the door on any player not currently with the team. It is more a matter of trying out different systems with a pool of around 40 players, in preparation for the 2023 AFC Asian Cup.

“No one has been ruled out. My current list contains 40 players and it is only because of the situation of the tournament that I can only select 23 of them. My technical staff and I felt that this set of players was the most suitable and most compatible for the two upcoming matches,” said the 55-year-old.

“This is how we learn more about the players. Of course I had meetings with all my players before this, I had communicated to them why we are going with this current list. Anyone not on the list knows why he’s not on it. But everyone is preparing for March,” he added.

The Blue Tigers have always built towards the future, and this is something that will set them in good stead, believes Stimac.
“I am very happy that over the past three and a half years we have met the goals that lay ahead of us. And I’m sure we made everyone happy in the qualifiers in June with our style of play and the mindset we showed in the game,” he said.

“The confidence with which they played, especially the youth, gives us a lot of hope. Most of our boys are around 22 years old right now. In a couple of years they will be 25 years old with a wide range of international experience and that will only help India further,” he added.
While the coach was proud of the performances of the youngsters in the squad, he also outlined the importance of building the core strength of the players to perform well on the international stage.

Hung Thinh Championship: Coach Igor Stimac optimistic about India winning Hung Thinh c’ship

“I’m so proud of the boys and the individual goals they’ve achieved – more than 90 percent of them had to have individual programs because they didn’t have any,” Stimac informed. “It was very important that we worked on the muscle strength of the boys in the squad. If you look at the boys from Saudi Arabia, Uzbekistan, Iran, Iraq, Korea, Australia, there is always such a big difference and technical ability means nothing in these days if you don’t have power,” he added.

The Indian football team will leave for Vietnam on Tuesday 20 September 2022 from Kolkata and travel to Ho Chi Minh City where they will participate in the Hung Thinh Friendly Football Tournament. The list of 23 players is as follows: Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem and Amrinder Singh.

Defenders: Sandesh Jhingan, Roshan Singh Naorem, Anwar Ali, Akash Mishra, Chinglensana Singh Konsham, Harmanjot Singh Khabra and Narender. Midfielders: Liston Colaco, Muhammed Ashique Kuruniyan, Vikram Partap Singh, Udanta Singh Kumam, Anirudh Thapa, Brandon Fernandes, Yasir Mohammad, Jeakson Singh Thounaojam, Sahal Abdul Samad, Rahul Kannoly Praveen and Lallianzuala Chhangte. Forwards: Sunil Chhetri and Ishan Pandita.

Hung Thinh Championship: Coach Igor Stimac optimistic about India winning Hung Thinh c’ship

Follow Hung Thinh Championship live updates with InsideSport.IN

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