India national team head coach, Igor Stimac is confident that his side will qualify for the group stages of the 2023 AFC Asian Cup, admitting that the Blue Tigers go into the upcoming final round qualifiers as “favourites”.
The India men’s national team have been drawn in Group D of the AFC Asian Cup Qualifiers, alongside the likes of Hong Kong, Afghanistan, and Cambodia, with all the fixtures to be held at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata.
Stimac’s side have arrived in Kolkata in order to prepare for the upcoming AFC Asian Cup Final Round Qualifiers in June and the Croatian believes that his players have the quality to come away as group toppers.
“We are the favourites from our group, and we’re not hiding from that. We want to go to this group and qualify for the Asian Cup. I see India going to the final stages. What I am interested in is the final result, that we should qualify. I don’t mind how many goals we score, or what the results were, as long as we qualify. Of course, if we score a lot, that will be good, but the main aim is to qualify,” he said at a press conference.
“We’re not under pressure, because we know what to do. Yes, there are certain expectations on our team, but I’m quite confident that we can do it. We have enough quality in the team to make sure that we qualify,” the Croatian added.
India will play two international friendlies against Zambia and Jordan on 25th and 28th of May as part of their preparations for the final round of the AFC Asian Cup qualifiers.