Asian Cup 2019: India's Stephen Constantine expects a 'tough game' against Bahrain

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India head coach Stephen Constantine is prepared for a possible Bahrain onslaught...

India head coach Stephen Constantine is expecting a difficult face-off against Bahrain in their final Group A game in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup at the Al-Sharjah Stadium on Monday.

The Blue Tigers hammered Thailand 4-1 in the opener but succumbed to a 0-2 loss against hosts UAE. With three points in their kitty, India only need a draw against Bahrain whereas their opponents must win in order to qualify from the group. 

"It will be a difficult game. Obviously, Bahrain need a win to qualify. We expect a difficult game. We have prepared well. The boys are motivated. They are a good team, they are organized, they have some quality players and it will be a difficult game," Constantine said on the eve of the match.

Udanta Singh India UAE

The Briton felt his team is capable of dealing with Bahrain's intensity given it's a must-win fixture for them. 

"But we are a quality side and we are quite organized. I expect it to be a tough game. Yes, they have the added pressure, I am sure they will try and attack us but we will be prepared for that. We are a well-organised fit team and we have been fighting for the last four years to be here. We don't think any teams that came here don't deserve to be here."

Thailand will take on UAE on the same day and if India lose against Thailand, their fate rests on UAE beating Thailand. However, the India coach not bothered about UAE's fixture. 

“I’m not interested in that game. How we do is what matters and we will try to win our game.”

Constantine is hoping for luck to play its part and felt Bahrain were unlucky against Thailand and were the better team against UAE. 

“I think it will be a very tough game. If you see Bahrain’s first game against UAE, you can probably say that Bahrain were the better side in that game. They were unlucky against Thailand and I hope that they will be unlucky against us tomorrow. They have to win, a draw won’t be a good enough for them. So, I think it will be a tough game.”

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