9/17/2018 4:51:44 PM (GMT+3)

We want the boys to stay focused, says U16 coach Bibiano

We want the boys to stay focused, says U16 coach Bibiano

NEW DELHI: The Indian U-16 team reached Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 12 days before the AFC U16 Championships with coach Bibiano Fernandes said that the pre-arrival would help the boys acclimatise with the conditions.

“The purpose of camping in Kuala Lumpur before the tournament was to help the boys get used to the climate,” said Fernandes on the federation website.

India are with Iraq, Nepal and Palestine in Group D of the competition, which starts on September 20.

No Indian team has ever qualified for the FIFA World Cup except by virtue of being hosts and the Indian U-16s look to book a semifinal spot which will guarantee them a spot in the 2019 FIFA U-17 World Cup in Peru.

“We all know the tournament’s importance and what it means if we qualify (for the semi-finals). We are ready and all that matters now is to perform on the field,” said the Goan.

As a part of the tournament preparation, the U16 boys have had travelled to China, Serbia, Turkey and Malaysia. 

“We have been preparing for this event for a long time and don’t want the players to be nervous. We want them to be strong and focused,” added Fernandes.