India head coach Igor Stimac believes they are capable of competing against teams in Asia apart from the Top 8 teams. India topped their AFC Asian Cup qualifying groups, beating Afghanistan, Cambodia, and Hong Kong in the process. They scored eight goals and conceded just one goal in the process. Stimac believes that qualification for the knockouts is a distinct possibility for the first time in their history.

“At the moment, we can play equal games with all those teams who are there from the eighth position in Asian ranking to up to the position where we stand,” India head coach Igor Stimac said. “I am not saying we can dominate these games, that wouldn’t be true. But we can find a way to win these games. When the Asian Cup happens, we need to make sure that we find a way of going through the group. We can do that. Once that happens, everything is possible. It’s 90 minutes and in football, anything can happen.”

“We will look for similar or better opponents. We have to see which teams are available,” he added. “I am also insisting now to have teams come to India. We have had enough traveling around and not having a chance to play 50 percent of the friendly games on home soil. We need to use these games to promote football in the country. We need to visit other states, other locations, and not just where football is already popular.”

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