India U17s gear up for Getafe clash

NEW DELHI: The India U-17 Men’s Team is set to face Getafe CF U-18 on Wednesday, May 10, 2023, in Otero de Herreros, Segovia, in their fifth practice game in Spain.

The Blue Colts have been training in Spain over the last few weeks as part of their preparation for the AFC U-17 Asian Cup, which is set to take place in Thailand next month. India, who have been placed in Group D of the Asian Cup, will face Vietnam (June 17), Uzbekistan (June 20), and Japan (June 23) in Pathum Thani and Bangkok.

After a string of fine performances, in which they played Atletico de Madrid U-17s (4-1), CD Leganes U-18s (0-2), Atletico de Madrid U-16s (2-1), and Real Madrid U-17s (3-3), the boys will now focus on the last two matches in Spain before heading to Germany for two more weeks.

Head coach Bibiano Fernandes said, “The boys are really motivated to work harder after the last few matches, especially after the result against Real Madrid, has been very positive.

However, the India U-17 head coach was quick to steer his boys away from any possible Icarus paradox.

“The results in the last few matches have been have been quite promising, but we are also aware of the complacency which is natural tendency of a human behaviour. We are playing all these matches to prepare for the AFC U-17 Asian Cup, which is our ultimate goal,” said Fernandes. “Of course these matches have been great, but they can be a double-edged sword in that they could make the players complacent. The coaching staff has been working hard to condition the players mentally, so that they maintain this consistency through to the Asian Cup.”

India’s game against Getafe U-18s will be a challenging one for the boys, especially in the physical aspect.

“Of course, no game is easy at this level, and Getafe U-18s are a very good side. They are technically sound, and I believe they are also physically more imposing than us,” said he. “But we also have our strong points, and will play accordingly.

“We’ve got two more matches to go in Spain, and then we move on to Germany. They boys are progressing really well, and hopefully they will be at the proper level ahead of the Asian Cup,” he said. India’s match against Getafe U-18s will get underway 4 pm IST on Wednesday.

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