Wednesday, November 16, 2011

India wants to win

India will seek to achieve a favourable result having gained confidence from a 1-1 draw it had forced against the visiting Malaysian team in the first of the two FIFA international football friendly matches in Guwahati on Sunday.

The second match of the tour will be played under lights at the Salt Lake Stadium here on Wednesday.
The theory of playing more international friendlies against better sides, as professed by former Indian coach Bob Houghton, is being carried forward by Savio Medeira, who has now assumed the mantle of coaching the national side.

And as India prepares to defend its SAFF Cup title early in December, Medeira said the friendlies would provide the side with vital practice.
Medeira proved a point about his ascension as the chief coach with a creditable draw in the first encounter. If Malaysia, ranked nine places above India at 151, was in better form, the momentum is now with India which will seek to make the most of home advantage.

While injuries keep out a couple of his starting options, including the hardworking midfielder Mehtab Hussain, Medeira will be relieved by the availability of Samir Naik, who was rested for the last match, to strengthen his backline.

There is also likely to be a new skipper in Sunil Chhetri, who may take the captain's armband from defender Mahesh Gawli. Having a robust forward-line to choose from, India will definitely be getting more aggressive to snatch a win from the visitor.

Malaysia, which arrived in the country with a favourable 2-1 record in the last three international friendlies, would be looking to add another win to the tally with coach Datuk K. Rajagopal preparing his wards for upcoming assignments.

Malaysia will be fielding in-form striker Safee Sali, who missed the Guwahati encounter having arrived a few hours before the match. Rajagopal sounded a bit apprehensive about how his boys would adjust to the artificial turf of the Salt Lake Stadium.

The teams (from):
India:Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Karanjit Singh, Subhasis Roy Chowdhury, Jaspal Parmar, Sameer Naik, Mahesh Gawli, Debabrata Roy, Anwar Ali, Syed Rahim Nabi, Gouramangi Singh, Baldeep Singh, Rocus Lamare, Mehrajuddin Wadoo, Francis Fernandes, Climax Lawrence, Anthony Pereira, Clifford Miranda, Seikh Jewel Raja, Steven Dias, Lalrindika Ralte, Baljit Sahni, Jeje Lalpekhlua, Sushil Singh, Joaquim Abranches, Sunil Chhetri.
Malaysia:G. Jeevanathan, Sharbinee Allawee, Farizal Marlias, Aidil Zafuan Abdul Razak, Norhafiz Zamani Misbah, M. Nasriq Baharom, Mohd. Faizal Muhammad, Mazlizam Mohammad, Abdul Aziz Ismail, Mohd Rizal Fahmi, Azmi Muslim, Amirizwan Tajuddin, Amar Rohidan, S. Chanturu, Yong Kuong Yuong, Safiq Rahim, Bunyamin Umar, S. Kunanlan, Shahurain Abu Samah, Ashaari Shamsuddin, Joseph Kallang Tie, Shahrizal Saad, Abdul Hadi Yahya, Abdul Manaf Mamat, Safee Sali, Izzaq Faris Ramlan.

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