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Indian National Football Team: Road Map to UAE

Team India: Training at Ambedkar Stadium

After a hectic 22 days of camp at the Ambedkar Stadium in the Capital, a 30 member Indian players set off for a mission to conquer UAE for the first leg of the second round Asia Qualifier for 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. Colaco’s side will play few international friendlies prior to facing UAE on July 23.

There was only one practice session scheduled for the day – the boys had a light practice session in the morning. A satisfied Armando wasn’t willing to go overboard over his team’s preparations. “I’m happy with the progress so far. I have certain plans and hope to execute them on the field,” he said. “The boys have adjusted well to the style and are raring to go.

Flying off from New Delhi in the afternoon, the team reaches Bangalore from where they will fly to Male, the Capital City of Maldives on Thursday morning. There, team Indian will play a friendly against the Maldives National Team on July 10.

From Maldives, the team will directly fly to Qatar where another preparatory camp will be held for about a week during which Chhetri and Co. will again play a friendly against the Qatar National Team on July 17.

Meanwhile with Tajikistan showing interest to play a friendly against India, the showdown is likely to happen if the Tajikistan Football Association agrees to play the match on July 14 rather than their proposed date of July 19, which India decline. If the friendly at all happens, it will take place in Qatar as the Tajikistan National team is also preparing in Qatar for their World Cup Qualifier against Syria.

After the friendlies in Qatar, the Blue Tigers will finally proceed for the final frontier to Abu Dhabi where they will take on the mighty UAE National side on July 23 before they return home to face them again on July 28. The winner of the two legs will move into the third round of Asia Qualifier for 2014 FIFA World Cup. The draw for the third round will take place on July 31.

Meanwhile Colaco is yet to name the Captain of the 30-member squad. He insisted on selecting captains on a rotational basis. “For the two Friendly matches, we may have two different captains,” he informed, adding: “However, for the World Cup Qualifier, we will have the same captain for the two legs but I’m yet to decide on that,” said the Coach before flying off to Bangalore.




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