The Indian national football team’s upcoming friendlies against Oman and UAE will be broadcast live in India, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) confirmed on Tuesday.
Coach Igor Stimac’s boys will be back in action after over a year-long COVID-19 hiatus with the two international friendlies in Dubai. The Blue Tigers will face Oman on March 25 and UAE on March 29.
India’s last international match, incidentally, was against Oman on November 19, 2019. in the joint FIFA World Cup 2022 and AFC Asian Cup 2023 qualifiers.
The two friendlies will be important preparatory matches for the Indian football team, which will resume its Group E qualifying matches in June. India play Asian champions Qatar on June 3, neighbours Bangladesh on June 7 and Afghanistan on June 5 in the qualifiers.
India is currently ranked 104th in the world and will be facing teams that rank higher. UAE is 74th and Oman 81st.
“I’ve always been on about how we need to better ourselves in Asia and that can happen only when we come up against top opponents,” Chhetri told the AIFF website. “Oman and UAE most certainly fit that bill.
“When I first heard of the possible opponents, I was extremely excited even though it was just a possibility! I hope we, as a team, make the most of this chance, give a good account of ourselves and most importantly, learn from the experience,” Chhetri added.
Indian football team friendlies schedule, fixtures and live India match start times
All times are Indian Standard Time (IST)
Thursday, 25 March: India vs Oman - 7:15 PM IST
Monday, 29 March: India vs UAE - 9:45 PM IST
Where to watch Indian football team’s friendlies vs Oman, UAE live in India?
The Indian football team’s matches against Oman on March 25 and UAE on March 29 will be telecast live on the Eurosport TV channel in India.
Indian football squad for friendly matches
Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Amrinder Singh, Subhasish Roy Chowdhury, Dheeraj Singh
Defenders: Ashutosh Mehta, Akash Mishra, Pritam Kotal, Sandesh Jhingan, Chinglensana Singh, Adil Khan, Mandar Rao Dessai, Mashoor Shereef
Midfielders: Rowllin Borges, Lalengmawia, Jeakson Singh, Raynier Fernandes, Anirudh Thapa, Bipin Singh, Yasir Mohammad, Suresh Singh, Halicharan Narzary, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Ashique Kuruniyan
Forwards: Manvir Singh, Ishan Pandita, Hitesh Sharma, Liston Colaco