As the Indian U-23 national team prepare for the 2018 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U-23 Championship qualifiers which are scheduled for July 19 onward in Doha, Qatar, head coach Stephen Constantine has named a 23-member squad for a trip to Singapore.
Following the 18-day camp held at New Delhi, the Indians will play two international friendlies against the Singapore U-23 team on July 9 and 12, with both matches to be streamed live.
Though Goal had earlier reported that the India Colts would be embarking on a trip to the United States of America in order to prepare for the qualifiers, the tour could not see the day of light as there was a hitch in procuring the visas.
India are placed alongside hosts Qatar, Syria and Turkmenistan with the group winner automatically making the cut for the final competition next year in China. Five best second placed teams from among 10 groups will also qualify for the main competition.
The last time the Indian U-23 team played a competitive game, it was when India, under coach Lee Johnson, stumbled at the final hurdle of the 2016 South Asian Games in a 2-1 defeat to Nepal.
“This will be the first time when most of the boys will play an international match. The boys need to adapt quickly to the high intensity of an international match, especially that the bigger challenge in Doha lies ahead,” said Constantine ahead of the Singapore tour.
“We have treated the U-23 boys the same manner we train the senior national team with respect to the training, the meetings, the discipline and the diet plan,” he added.
The full list of the 23-member squad:
Goalkeepers: Vishal Kaith, Kamaljit Singh, Sukhadev Patil
Defenders: Salam Ranjan Singh, Lalruatthara, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Davinder Singh, Nishu Kumar, Sairuathkima, Sarthak Golui, Kamalpreet Singh Grewal
Midfielders: Anirudh Thapa, Nikhil Poojari, Nandha Kumar, Germanpreet Singh, Mawihmingthanga, Vinit Rai, Robinson Singh, Lallianzuala Chhangte
Forwards: Hitesh Sharma, Alen Deory, Manvir Singh, Daniel Lalhlimpuia.