India men’s national team head coach, Igor Stimac has opened up on his side’s 2-1 win over Afghanistan in their second game of the 2023 Asian Cup qualifiers, claiming that they played as the “Blue Tigers”.
India won courtesy of late second half goals from Sunil Chhetri and Sahal Samad, which ensured that Stimac’s side remain unbeaten going into their final qualifying game against Hong Kong – which is scheduled for Tuesday, 14 June.
“In Saturday’s game, India was Blue Tigers as you call it. And I need to keep the tigers in our team because that is the way we’re headed forward. Going out, enjoying the football, fighting for your country with pride and honour. We will lose some games and we don’t worry about that, but as I said, I will mention one player I’m very proud of today because he faced lots of criticism and that’s Manvir [Singh],” he said at a press conference.
Despite the two wins so far, Stimac has come in for criticism due to India’s dependency on Chhetri for goals up front and he will need to ensure that the other attackers step up when called on to provide the Blue Tigers with incisiveness up front.