India football team coach Igor Stimac announced that Glan Martins and Sivasakthi Narayanan have been replaced by Naorem Mahesh Singh and Pritam Kothal in the side. The two players have been dropped as they are dealing with injuries, and are being given time to recover.
The Blue Tigers will be facing Myanmar and the Kyrgyz Republic in the coming days in the Tri-Nation International Football Tournament. The matches will be played at the Khuman Lampak Stadium in Imphal on March 22 and 28.
Pritam Kothal and Mahesh Singh called up to India football team
“We have had three days of training so far, with the players that were not in the Hero ISL final. The rest will join us today (Sunday), so we will get one training session with them all before travelling to Imphal,” Igor Stimac told the India football team website. “I would like to congratulate both teams on an exciting final that went into extra time and penalties. I am sure all the fans enjoyed it very much.”
Eight out of nine players participated in the ISL final, and Stimac has acknowledged the need to manage the load on the players to minimise the risk of injury.
“Most of these players that are now joining us will be exhausted both physically and psychologically, and there’s also the risk of putting too much load on their young shoulders and risking injuries,” he added. “So, we need to be very careful that we do not take such risks with them. The health of the players is of paramount importance. The players belong to the clubs also, and we should not be irresponsible and send them back with injuries.”