New Delhi, Feb 13 (IANS) Derrick Pereira was on Wednesday named the head coach of the India Under-23 team for the forthcoming AFC Qualifiers, to be held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, from March 22.
Besides India, the other teams in the group are Tajikistan and Pakistan.
Pereira will be in charge of the preparatory camp in Goa, which kicks off on March 2.
The team will also play a friendly match with Qatar U-23 team in Doha on March 11.
“His coaching pedigree along with AFC Pro Licence degree is the perfect recipe to guide our young players in the AFC U-23 qualifiers. We aim to qualify from the group to the AFC Championship next year, and I wish him and the team good luck,” said Kushal Das, the All India Football Federation (AIFF) general secretary.
“It’s an absolute honour to get associated with the National Team setup. I love to take challenges,” Pereira said. “I know most of the players and have seen them in action. But we need to find the right combination to perform and achieve the desired results,” he said.
“They are a quality side. I have a feeling that some of the U-23 boys from Qatar will be in their 2022 World Cup squad. It will be a tough challenge which will help us prepare for future assignments,” he said.
Here is the list of probables:
Goalkeepers: Mohammed Nawaz, Prabhsukhan Gill, Arshdeep Singh, Dheeraj Singh.
Defenders: Nishu Kumar, Kamalpreet Singh, Provat Lakra, Boris Singh, Sajid Dhot, Sairuatkima, Sarthak Golui, Sahil Panwar, Gaurav Bora, Narender Gahlot, Mehtab Singh, Anwar Ali, Wung Muirang, Asish Rai, Jerry Lalrinzuala.
Midfielders: Liston Colaco, Lalianzuala Chhangte, Ashique Kuruniyan, Vinit Rai, Anirudh Thapa, Sahal Abdul, Amarjit Singh, Deepak Tangri, Rohit Kumar, Suresh Singh, Komal Thatal, Rahul KP.
Forwards: Daniel Lalhlimpuia, Hitesh Sharma, Rahim Ali, Samuel Lalmuanpuia, Rohit Danu, Jerry Mawihminthanga.