India take on Singapore

Chhetri & Co keen to keep the momentum going

High on confidence after their recent Nehru Cup triumph, India take on Singapore in a rare international football friendly on a FIFA date, which will also be the first away match under coach Wim Koevermans here on Tuesday.

Having successfully begun his stint at the helm of affairs with a title win in the Nehru Cup last month, Koevermans would be keen to maintain the momentum and collect some valuable ranking points at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium.

Being a match on a FIFA date, Koevermans has a full squad available to pick unlike the past wrangling between the AIFF and the clubs on release of players for such games.
For the 168th ranked Indians, a win against Singapore, who are six place higher than the visitors, will be a good chance for them to stop the slide in the FIFA rankings.

Singapore will be without some key players, including regular captain Shahril Ishak, but it won’t be easy for Koeverman’s men who have tasted success mostly on home soil.
Both the sides have met 15 times before with Singapore winning seven matches while India were victorious on six occasions. The last time, the two sides met was in 2004 when Singapore won 2-0 in a 2006 World Cup qualifying match.

“It’s nice to get to play a match on a FIFA date. We look to improve ourselves and are looking forward to a good match. It will be a difficult one,” Koevermans said.
“They have the home advantage. But we play every game intending to win it and we will want to win this too. But as I said, it’s not easy,” he said.

   Captain Sunil Chhetri said the team was excited about playing here. “We are excited to come here and play. Our last tournament was a memorable one. But that’s past. Now it’s up to us to take up the challenge,” Chhetri said.

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