After the bitter visit to Qatar, team India will be looking forward to the next match in order to secure three points for the first step of Asia Cup qualification. The reverse fixture against Bangladesh, which ended in a draw after Adil Khan’s late equalizer, will be a motivating factor for the Blue Tigers to get the job done this time around.
In terms of gameplay, India’s dynamic with Bangladesh is extremely different as compared to Qatar. Igor Stimac will expect his side to be more on the offensive side in this fixture. The 5-4-1 formation in the previous match was a byproduct of the defensive approach. However, they will be expected to resort to a back 4 for the match with an increased number of attacking players involved.
The most effective formation for India’s offensive approach in Bangladesh would be a 4-2-3-1. Hyderabad FC left-back Akash Mishra would be expected to start since he is an attack-oriented fullback. Meanwhile, Pritam Kotal will be featuring on the right. Chinglesana Singh, who missed the match through mild soreness, will be back to accompany Sandesh Jhingan in central defence. The midfield pivot will be chosen so as to prioritize defensive cover; Glan Martins impressed against Qatar and could be expected to start again alongside Bengaluru FC’s Suresh Wangjam Singh.
With the striker spot being fulfilled by Manvir Singh, the three behind him could be a variable. Skipper Sunil Chhetri was taken off at halftime against Qatar in order to be preserved for the next match. Therefore, he will be starting on either the left-wing or behind the striker. Depending on that, either Ashique can start on the left-wing, or Sahal can start behind the striker. Brandon Fernandes could also be an option for Sahal’s position. However, on the right side, Udanta Singh is a strong candidate to provide pace.
Bangladesh, who will naturally be expected to keep less possession, can be a threat through counterattacks. The Blue Tigers will have to be wary of their breakaways, along with their quality in set-pieces. The goal they scored against India in the reverse fixture was a result of one of those.