The Blue Tigers will be in action on March 23 and 26 respectively.
On Wednesday (22 March), the Indian football team will play their first game of 2022 as they take on Bahrain in an international friendly. While such competition is huge, a lot has taken place in its build-up during and post the Indian Super League (ISL) 2021-22 season. Of this, the latest information is about the game’s telecast itself. Earlier on Tuesday, the AIFF made a statement on the same attributing its lack to the “host Federation.”
It stated, “Despite our best efforts in working with the Bahrain FA to live telecast and stream the International Friendlies against Bahrain and Belarus, owing to lack of support & subsequent technical feasibility, it won’t be possible to telecast the matches in India.”
This won’t be the first time that matches of the national team won’t be telecast in the country. There have been several instances in the past where it was either left too late or attempts weren’t made to make the games available for fans to watch.
Earlier, it was reported that seven players were waiting in Mumbai for their visas to travel to the West Asian country. This includes Amrinder Singh, Anirudh Thapa, Brandon Fernandes, Chinglensana Singh, Akash Mishra, Aniket Jadhav and Bipin Singh — all of whom were to be crucial for this game, coming in with red-hot form from the ISL season.
As per the latest updates though, they currently have their visas and will be looking to travel to Bahrain in the morning. Nonetheless, it’s been a worrisome saga all the while — and the latest development will come as a disappointment to fans.
On the entire build-up, Indian football team head coach Igor Stimac spoke at the pre-match press conference earlier in the day. When questioned about trying out new things with the squad, he stated, “To be honest, in such a circumstance I still don’t know what I’m going to try. I’m yet to know how many players I’ll be having here for the games.
“Then I’ll try to manage to put the best XI and try a few things”. Alongside, he shared his reasons for choosing Bahrain and Belarus for these friendlies.
“The idea was to check on where we stand at the moment. I know for our players it’s been a difficult season and they are physically and mentally exhausted. But, pride is something I count on when they play for the national team,” the Croatian expressed.
“Thereby, talking about the necessity of motivation from tougher challenges for India. But with everything that’s taken place, can this goal be met? Well, it’s only a matter of time before it’s found out.