NEW DELHI: A 28-member Indian U-22 squad for the forthcoming AFC U-22 Championship (Qualifiers) leaves for an eight-day training camp in Dubai tonight. The team being coached by Australian Arthur Papas would be training at the Al Wasl Training Ground in Dubai. In addition, the Indian squad would also be playing two practice matches during their stay in Dubai including one against DNATA Club.
The team leaves for Muscat on June 21. India have been clubbed with UAE, Oman, Iraq, Lebanon and Turkmenistan in Group A.
Papas, who has been in charge of the squad since June 1, admitted it’s a tough group. “They are quality teams. But since we have trained together since the first day of the month, there are signs of improvement,” he maintained.
“But all of us, including me need to be patient.”
During their training in delhi, the Indian squad played two friendly matches against a selected Delhi XI and won both of them. In the U-22 AFC Championship, India play their first match against Lebanon on June 23 at the Al Seeb Sports Stadium in Muscat. The squad would be pruned down to 23 before the squad leaves Dubai for the Championship.
The list of 28 players stay as follows:
Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu (Kingfisher East Bengal), Ravi Kumar (Pailan Arrows), Soram Poirei Angamba (Shillong Lajong FC).
Defenders: Pritam Kotal, Vishal Kumar, Souvik Ghosh, Prathamesh Maulingkar, Deepak Devrani (all from Pailan Arrows), Narayan Das, Yumnam Chingkhei (all from Tata Football Academy), Abhishek Das (Kingfisher East Bengal), Ramandeep Singh (Air India).
Midfielders: Bikramjit Singh (Sr), Pranoy Halder, Ognam Milan Singh, Tirthankar Sarkar, Alwyn George, (all from Pailan Arrows), Simranjit Singh (Tata Football Academy), David Lalbiakzara, Ganeshan (both from Pune FC), Deepak Prakash (HAL), Lalrindika Ralte (Churchill Brothers), Shyju Mon (Chirag Kerala), Romeo Fernandes (Dempo).
Forwards: Rajinder Kumar, Holicharan Narzary (both from Pailan Arrows), Jeje Lalpekhlua (Pune FC), Manandeep Singh (Air India).
HEAD COACH: Arthur Papas
India Fixtures: India vs Lebanon (June 23), India vs Iraq (June 25), India vs United Arab Emirates (June 28), India vs Turkmenistan (June 30) and India vs Oman (July 3).