By Rajarshi Chakrabarty
India, who have already qualified for the final round of the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019, have now announced their squad for their final qualification AFC Asian Cup qualifier match against the Kyrgyz Republic scheduled to be played at Dolun Omurzhakov Stadium on 27th March 2018 at Bishkek.
India has already qualified from Group A with 13 points from 5 games recording four wins and a draw.Stephen Constantine’s 32-man squad features most predictable regulars who from the core of the team while experienced goalkeeper Subrata Paul’s omission is bound to raise some eyebrows.
Stephen Constantine’s incongruous team selection is a shift from the pragmatic approach and Indian football fans finds it baffling as club team irregulars and underperforming players like Sumeet Passi, Hitesh Sharma and Holicharan Narzary gets selected ahead of consistent performers like Michael Soosairaj, Samuel Lalmuanpuia, Subhash Singh gets overlooked coming from the back of stellar performance for their respective teams in the recently concluded Hero I-League.
The surprise team selection from Constantine shirks young Indian players from ISL like Lallianzula Chhangte (Delhi Dynamos), Jerry Mawhimingthanga (Jamshedpur FC) and Mandar Rao Desai (FC Goa).
The match against the Kyrgyz Republic will not be a significant encounter for India in terms of qualification but the young Indian side will be hoping for a strong performance away from home at Bishkek.
The match will kick-off at IST 7.30pm (local time 8 pm).
The list of the squad is as follows:
GOALKEEPERS: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Vishal Kaith, Amrinder Singh, Rehenesh T.P.
DEFENDERS: Pritam Kotal, Nishu Kumar, Lalruatthara, Anas Edathodika, Sandesh Jhingan, Salam Ranjan Singh, Sarthak Golui, Jerry Lalrinzuala, Narayan Das, Subhasish Bose.
MIDFIELDERS: Jackichand Singh, Udanta Singh, Seityasen Singh, Dhanapal Ghanesh, Anirudh Thapa, Germanpreet Singh, Rowllin Borges, Md. Rafique, Cavin Lobo, Bikash Jairu, Halicharan Narzary.
FORWARDS: Hitesh Sharma, Balwant Singh, Jeje Lalpekhlua, Seminlen Doungel, Alen Deory, Manvir Singh, Sumeet Passi.