India men’s national team head coach, Igor Stimac has reiterated that his side are there to prove why they are considered the “favourites” to progress from their Group in the 2023 Asian Cup final round qualifiers.
India have been placed alongside Cambodia, Afghanistan and Hong Kong in the final round of the Asian Cup qualifiers, with the Blue Tigers set to open their campaign on Wednesday, June 8 at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata.
Stimac who has come in for criticism in the recent past, believes that his side need to prove why they are being labelled as the “favourites”.
“It should be helpful of course (on playing in Kolkata). But it can go the other way if we don’t succeed in the first game, but what I’m happy about being in Kolkata is that we wanted to be in this city because of the football history in this city, because of the support we are getting here time and again. So, we are expecting great crowds and great support from the stands,” Stimac said at a press conference.
“We don’t need to hide from the fact that this city, this crowd, and the situation we are in is making us the favourite in the group. And we are here to prove that,” he added.
It will be interesting to see how Stimac’s side play in their three qualifying games and whether they live up to their favourites tag.