U23 Asian Cup Qualifiers India gear up for do or die battle against UAE

Dalian (China), Sep 11 : After the heartbreaking defeat against hosts China by a slender margin, India U23 are determined to turn things around in their last match in Group G against UAE in the AFC U23 Asian Cup Qualifiers here on Tuesday. A win for UAE will take them to the top of the group since they drew 1-1 in their first game against China, while India will have to win by a big margin at the Dalian Sports Centre Stadium to keep alive their hopes of qualifying as one of the top four second-placed teams in the competition. "I???m very pleased with the way my players have reacted after the game against China. Their attitude is fantastic and their dedication and professionalism are unwavering," said India U23 Head Coach Clifford Miranda. "These are the things that matter the most, especially in the first training session after a defeat. The boys are hurt because of the loss and the manner in which we lost, but their attitude is extremely positive, and they are raring to go again with the same spirit in the next game against UAE," he told the official website of the All-India Football Federation (AIFF). Sharing his thoughts on the upcoming match against UAE, Miranda said: "UAE is both technical and physical, but I think we are capable enough to handle any kind of physicality. We are also very strong, even though we may be inferior in terms of height. There is no deterrent or excuse for matching up against the UAE." When asked if there will be an attack-heavy approach to the last game, specifically because India will need to win big to give themselves a chance to qualify for the final round of the competition, the former India player said he believed it???s a bit more complex than that. "It???s an international game and we can???t just be thinking about scoring and leave openings that our opponents can capitalise on. The most important thing is to have a positive approach to go out and win the game but win the game with caution. We will assess the match-up and be careful in our approach. Of course, we need to play to win, but we need to win by being practical," Miranda was quoted as saying by aiff.com. /IANS


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