Footballer Gouramangi Singh said, "We arrived here early and have already had two practice sessions. We are ready for the challenge."
National Coach Wim Koevermans commenting on the favourites in SAFF Championship, said , "Look at this, (pointing to the India Logo on his shirt). Every match is tough. Every match is a Final."
Koevermans said, "We've heard that Pakistan had a number of Foreign based players in the squad. We will have a look at them when we play against them."
India's Japanese born midfielder Arata Izumi admitted he was "excited" about the forthcoming Indo-Pak clash.
"I'm excited about playing Pakistan. We have a good track record at the SAFF Championship and there will always be pressure on us," he said. "But we are taking it as a motivation and will try our best to maintain it."
"I had a dream of playing International Football and am honoured to wear the India Blue," he added.
Goalkeeper Sandip Nandy emphasised the importance of the first match of any Tournament. "The first match is always very tough and tricky too. We are taking it one match at a time," he said.
Nandy was a member of India's triumphant SAFF squad which won in Pakistan in 2005.
"That was a memorable moment for me. But every Player wants to win every match and every Tournament. Even our opponents who would be coming hard at us have the same motive in mind. We are all playing for our Country," Nandy who made a comeback to the National squad after five years said.
(Image Courtesy: AIFF Media)
--IBNS (Posted on 29-08-2013)