India face must-win match against Iran in AFC U-16 Championship

Margao, Sep 20 (IANS) India coach Nicolai Adam hopes his team will rise to the occasion in a must win match when they face Iran in an Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup U-16 Championship here on Wednesday.

India are presently third in Group A with just a point after two matches, Iran have four from as many matches.

The top two of the four-team group advances to the knockout stage, thereby making a win imperative for the home team to move ahead in the competition.

India began with a 2-3 loss against the United Arab Emirates (UAE) but improved to force a 3-3 draw against Saudi Arabia.

India coach Nicolai Adam hopes his wards will carry on the momentum from the Saudi Arabia game in the crucial match at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.

India will advanced to the knockout phase of the competition for only the second time and first since 2002 should a win be achieved against Iran.

“It will be a very difficult match against Iran but we will give it our best,” Adam was quoted as saying by www.the-afc.com on Yuesday.

“There have been a lot of results at this tournament that have not been expected. Honestly, I believe it can happen. If you can imagine it and believe in it then it is possible and that is how we will go into the match.”

Adam though accepted beating Iran will be very difficult though they aren’t “unbeatable”.

“It will be super difficult. They have a lot of quality in their side,” the German coach added.

“We had met Iran last year in Tabriz in the AFC U-16 qualifiers and they had beaten us 3-0. Going into the match we are definitely not the favourites just like we were never the favourites in the group.”

“But yeah, like any other team we play to win every match and no team is unbeatable.”

–IANS

dm/sam/bg

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