New Delhi [India], April 14 (ANI): Indian football team head coach Igor Stimac on Wednesday wished luck to FC Goa and Bengaluru FC ahead of their matches in the AFC Champions League and AFC Cup respectively.
FC Goa will take on Al Rayyan in their first encounter of the AFC Champions League while Bengaluru FC will lock horns against Nepalese side Tribhuvan Army FC in a Preliminary Stage Two Clash of the 2021 AFC Cup. Both the clashes are to be played later in the day.
Taking to Twitter he wrote, "Wishing coach Juan Ferrando and the entire @FCGoaOfficial team all the best before their @TheAFCCL opening match tonight. Boys, you are not only representing your club tonight, you're going to play on behalf of every single Indian in the entire world. (1/2)
"Nothing can be bigger than this. All of us will cheer for you from our home. Let's win it together! Wishing @bengalurufc ahead of their @AFCCup preliminary stage 2 match against Tribhuvan Army FC too. (2/2) Jai Hind!" he added.
After winning the ISL League Winners' Shield in the 2019-20 season, FC Goa qualified for the 2021 AFC Champions League Group Stage -- the first time that a team from India will be playing at this stage of the competition. The Gaurs are set to face some of the best teams in Asia, in the form of Persepolis FC (Iran), Al Rayyan (Qatar) and Al Wahda (UAE).
On the other hand, the fixture will be Marco Pezzaiuoli's first competitive game in charge of the Blues, since his appointment as head coach in February.
"I'm very hungry for my first game. The players look sharp and the preparation has been good. The youngsters in my team are working hard, and in our friendly against Goa, they performed well. They are putting pressure on the others in the squad, and that is good to see. This is an important game for us because we exited the competition early last season, and we want to reach the Group Stage this year. The first step in that direction is to beat a strong Nepalese team and I believe we are strong enough to do that," said Pezzaiuoli, speaking to the media ahead of the fixture on Tuesday. (ANI)