New Delhi: In what turns out to be a piece of sensational news for Indian football fans, Igor Stimac has named central defender Anas Edathodika in his list of 35 probables for the preparatory camp for the Intercontinental Cup 2019 to be held at Ahmedabad. The Blue Tigers will be camping at the Mumbai Football Arena in Mumbai from June 25.
Anas had announced his retirement from International Football after the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019.
“Coach Stimac has shown his faith in me, and it's my turn to repay him,” Anas said. “Coach asked me to join the upcoming camp. Honestly, I was taken aback. Later Venky-bhai (Assistant Coach Venkatesh Shanmugam) shared all details, and I just can't wait to join the camp,” he stated.
“Anas had played a significant role under Mr Constantine, and I welcome his decision to accept my call and make himself available for the National Team after we spoke,” said Stimac.
The Kerala Blasters player is now focused on the camp, “At the moment, I’m just focussing on the camp, and not thinking about making the cut to the team at all. Whatever comes my way, I'll accept it,” he admitted. “I'm equally passionate and focused like I was a year back. I'm ready to push myself more.”
“All our players should consider themselves candidates for the National Team shirt as far as they work hard, and keep playing well for their respective clubs,” Stimac added. “I use this opportunity to pay my regards, and best wishes for the upcoming season to all the players, managers and clubs in the Hero I-League, and the Hero ISL.”
Anas informed that every player he has spoken to, have rated Stimac very highly. "Every coach has a different philosophy, and approach the game differently. We had some great results before, and now all the boys whom I have spoken to, have lauded coach Stimac heavily,” Anas explained.
Stimac has also named new names in the squad- defenders Sarthak Golui, and Narender Gehlot; and midfielders Mandar Rao Desai, Ashique Kuruniyan, and Nikhil Poojary have been called up.
The Intercontinental Cup will be held at The Arena in Ahmedabad from July 7-19, 2019. Defending champions India begin their campaign on an opening day against Tajikistan on July 7, with DPR Korea, and Syria being the other two teams in the four-nation competition. Every team will be playing each other once, with the top two advancing to the final.
The list of 35 probables stay as follows:
GOALKEEPERS: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Amrinder Singh, Kamaljit Singh, Vishal Kaith.
DEFENDERS: Pritam Kotal, Nishu Kumar, Rahul Bheke, Salam Ranjan Singh, Sandesh Jhingan, Adil Khan, Anas Edathodika, Anwar Ali (Jr), Sarthak Golui, Subhasish Bose, Narender Gahlot.
MIDFIELDERS: Udanta Singh, Jackichand Singh, Brandon Fernandes, Anirudh Thapa, Raynier Fernandes, Pronay Halder, Rowllin Borges, Vinit Rai, Sahal Abdul, Amarjit Singh, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Mandar Rao Desai, Ashique Kuruniyan, Nikhil Poojary, Michael Soosairaj.
FORWARDS: Balwant Singh, Sunil Chhetri, Jobby Justin, Farukh Choudhary, Manvir Singh.