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India to play Turkmenistan in AFC U-16 opener

Tuesday - September 17, 2019 8:02 pm , Category : SPORTS
New Delhi, Sep 17 (IANS) India will take on Turkmenistan in their AFC U-16 Championship opener on Wednesday in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. The Indian colts will then face Bahrain and Uzbekistan on September 20 and 22 respectively.
The squad won against Fenerbahçe S.K. in a friendly game before the championship as part of their preparation.
India finished joint-best in 2018 when Bibiano Fernandes and his boys reached the quarter-finals.
"This is one of the tougher groups in the AFC Qualifiers, and we have been working hard for this competition. We know getting the desired results will not be easy in any of the matches, but we believe that if we play to our ability we will overcome this group," said Fernandes to www.the-aiff.com.
"Turkmenistan will be a tough opponent in the opening game. Of course, we have been preparing for these matches for quite some time, so the boys know exactly what to do. We have our plans, and hopefully, proper execution of these plans will lead to three points tomorrow," he said.
The AFC U-16 Championship is also the qualifier to the 2021 FIFA U-17 World Cup, with the top four sides representing AFC in the biennial event.
The squad has four Minerva Punjab FC products, namely Himanshu Jangra, Ayush Deshwal, Maheson Singh and Paogoumang Singson.
The 23-man squad:
Goalkeepers: Aman Kumar Sahani, Mohit Singh Dhami, Ayush Deshwal
Defenders: Ranjan Soren, Shameek Caine Vas, Halen Nongtdu, Pritam Meetei, Anish Mazumder, Amandeep, Paogoumang Singson; Midfielders: Taison Singh, Ratanbi Singh, Voihenba Meitei, Renedy Meitei, Siba Prasad, Maheson Singh, Sibajit Singh, Amosa Lalnundanga, Satvik Sharma
Strikers: Shubho Paul, Isac Zomuanpuia, Sridarth Nongmeikapam, Himanshu Jangra

--IANS dm/kk/bg