GUWAHATI, Nov 12 – The much awaited India-Malaysia international soccer friendly match is all set to be held at the Indira Gandhi Stadium, Sarusajai here tomorrow. Assam Football Association (ACA) is the host of the match which has been allotted by All India Football Association and recognised by FIFA.
Addressing a press conference here today, Malayasian coach Datuk K Rajagobal said although they are nine position ahead of India in FIFA ranking, the home team is capable of turning the tables on them. “FIFA ranking is immaterial in this match as the Indian team has some good players in their ranks like Sunil Chetry and Je Je. But we are here to play better than the Indians and the match is likely to be an interesting one”, said Rajagobal.
He, however, revealed that nine main players of the national team are not in the team and they have been replaced by junior players. Now they are focusing on the Asian Cup qualifiers and preparing the team for that championship.
Indian head coach Savio Madeira said he is preparing the Indian team for the SAF Cup and accordingly he is planning with this group of players. But he said that he got very less time with all the players as most of them were are with the I-League. This match is a big challenge for him as for the first time he is handling the national team as coach. Without key players like Raju, Subrata Paul and Mehtab this Indian team may find it tough in tomorrow’s match. He, however, said this batch is very optimistic and determined to do well. AFA secretary Ankur Dutta said the match will start at 5.45 pm. Governor JB Patnaik and Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi will be present in the match as chief guest and guest of honour respectively.