Sunday, November 28, 2021

Top 5 Indian Players to keep an Eye on in the AFC U-23 Asian Cup 2022 Qualifiers

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The Indian U-23 football squad will shortly begin qualifying for the AFC U-23 Asian Cup, which will be held next year. After the SAFF Championship 2021, Igor Stimac’s team didn’t have much time to prepare. The Croatian, on the other hand, has included a handful of players from that competition in his U-23 side.

The majority of the players in this squad are from Indian Super League (ISL) teams. The I-League has only a few players. The squad includes a few well-known players. They’ll primarily be charged with assisting India in its victories over difficult opponents in the UAE, Oman, and the Kyrgyz Republic.

AFC U 23 Asian Cup Qualifiers
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With that in mind, here are five essential Indian players to watch at the upcoming AFC U-23 Asian Cup 2022 Qualifiers:

Dheeraj Singh Moirangthem

After performing for FC Goa last season, Dheeraj Singh is set to be India U-23s’ first-choice goalkeeper for the next qualifiers. During their AFC Champions League campaign, he was outstanding in goal, putting in some outstanding performances. In five games, the former Kerala Blasters and ATK Mohun Bagan goalkeeper only allowed five goals. He also kept two clean sheets.

The 21-year-quick old’s reflexes and commanding demeanour should help him keep a solid defensive line in place. If India is to win, Dheeraj must be dependable in goal and keep clean sheets. It remains to be seen how the young goalkeeper performs in the qualifiers since he has already demonstrated that he has the pedigree to shine in important games.

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Vikram Partap Singh

In many youth-levels matches for India, the young Mumbai City talent has impressed. Now is his chance to show his worth at the U-23 level. Last season, the 19-year-old saw limited action with the Islanders, making only a couple of appearances as a substitute. In the attacking zones, though, Vikram Partap Singh is a real firecracker.

The teenager can be a true unpredictable figure with his dribbling talent, pace, and awareness in the final third. To add that spark to India’s style, he simply needs to make full use of his clinical nature and be decisive in front of the goal. If he can regain his form, the 19-year-old might be India’s breakout star in the event.

Rahul KP

Last season, Rahul KP had a great season with Kerala Blasters and was undoubtedly one of their finest players. With three goals in 17 appearances, he was the team’s third-highest scorer in the league. The dynamic winger has the potential to be a truly explosive figure in attack, thanks to his speed and dribbling ability, which make him stand out from the crowd.

Rahul demonstrated his capacity to shine in crucial games by scoring against Bengaluru FC and FC Goa, last season. The 21-year-old could be the focal point of India’s attack and help them excel. A clinical finisher with plenty of imagination to tease opponents, the 21-year-old may be the focal point of India’s attack and help them excel.

Rahim Ali

Rahim Ali has emerged as a new favourite of Igor Stimac, who has given him numerous chances in recent games. During a set of friendly games against Nepal last month, he was named ‘Man of the Tournament.’ Ali was also a part of India’s SAFF Championship victory and is expected to lead the line for the U-23s in the next qualifiers.

Ali, a well-built, powerful striker, can aid Stimac’s young side with his hold-up play, ability to create space for others, and quick responses. The Chennaiyin FC striker can bother India U23s’ opponents in the next games if he can be more clinical with his finishing.


Lalengmawia was a standout performer for India in the SAFF Championship victory. He shone in the team’s huge wins over Maldives and Nepal (final), securing his spot as a regular. He’ll almost certainly start all of India’s U23 games at the AFC U-23 Asian Cup Qualifiers. Apuia will be charged with leading India’s midfield fight, with his great passing abilities and calm demeanour.

The Mumbai City midfielder must have a good tempo to motivate the India U-23 team to combat their opponents. To defend his backline and keep them from being exposed, he must work hard defensively. Apuia can lead the Blue Colts to some remarkable results if he can find his stride in the qualifications.

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