India prepares for another serious battle under Igor Stimac as the team faces Thailand in the third-position match of the King's Cup 2019.
While India lost to Curacao, hosts Thailand was defeated by Vietnam in their previous fixture. The game will take place on Wednesday at Buriram, Thailand.
Igor Stimac started his reign with a lose, that had a number of positives in it. Indian fans witnessed good efforts from the six players who made their debut in the national colors.
After so long, the midfield played with an attacking mindset looking to open up chances and rely on breakthroughs rather than long balls. However, the coach also realized the lapses present in the Indian defense that need to be addressed before the Thailand match.
The first half would be the time phase India will look to improve from now on. The usage of wings too will be a boost to the Tigers' attack. With a sharp striker like Sunil Chhetri upfront, India can now dream of challenging better sides like Thailand on the field.
Thailand has been pushed out of the cup final by a dramatic last-minute defeat. A slight error from the goalkeeper in the last minute of extra time denied them tickets to the final. But, the team was well short of their natural superior game.
Thailand is missing the services of a head coach as they are now under caretaker manager Sirisak Yodyardthai. However, it would be a tussle of pride for the War Elephants to not finish at the bottom of their own tournament.
They would be determined to end with a positive note against India. An out-of-form attack is the troubling factor for the team.
Even after defending well, Thailand wasn't able to convert their attacks into goals. The hosts would aim at rectifying the errors and payback for the defeat they suffered from India in the AFC Asian Cup, earlier this year.
India vs Thailand: Match Information
Date: 8 June 2019
Kickoff: 2:00 PM IST
Live Stream: Star Sports Network and Hotstar
Venue: Chang Arena, Buriram
India vs Thailand: Team News
Michael Soosairaj is a probable inclusion into the lineup. In that case, Lallianzuala Chhangte will have to watch from the bench.
Thai forward Chanathip Songkrasin was ruled out of the tournament with a muscle tear.
India vs Thailand: Probable Lineups
India (4-2-3-1): Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Pritam Kotal, Sandesh Jhingan, Rahul Bheke, Subhasish Bose, Pronay Halder, Brandon Fernandes, Udanta Singh, Sahal Abdul Samad, Sunil Chhetri
Thailand (3-4-2-1): Kawin Thamsatchanan, Adison Promrak, Pansa Hemviboon, Suphan Thongsong, Tristan Do, Sarach Yooyen, Tanaboon Kesarat, Theerathon Bunmathan, Thitiphan Puangchan, Supachai Jaided, Supachok Sarachat
India vs Thailand: Form Guide
India vs Thailand: Head-to-Head
India vs Thailand: Key Players
Udanta Singh will be a vital presence in the Indian lineup. The Manipur born midfielder had a good outing against Curacao and was a live wire on the right wing.
The 22-year old will be crucial in developing attacks from the midfield. He will also be a prominent part of India's counter-attacks with his incredible agility.
Thitipan Puangchan will be a lethal weapon for Thailand in the midfield. If the coach stays with the same formation, the 25-year old will be deployed as an attacking midfielder.
Puangchan holds the ability to beat defenders at ease and will be a challenge to the Indian defensive midfielders. He is 5ft 10in tall and will be a target man in set pieces.
India vs Thailand: Predictions
India is not currently a very serious threat to the hosts. The team is lacking understanding between the players and coach, which will take time to be fielded out.
However, the Blue Tigers showed their potential against Curacao and will be aiming at continuing the midfield brilliance.
If India can get the better of Thailand in the midfield with perfect support from the defense, Stimac's men will be close to a milestone.
Predicted Score: India 2-1 Thailand