India vs Bangladesh: Jamie Day - The way we played against Qatar, we can beat India

Bangladesh national team coach Jamie Day has called for his players to rise to the occasion when they face India at the Salt Lake Stadium in Kolkata, on Tuesday.

Despite a 1-0defeat against Afghanistan followed by a spirited performance against Qatar which they ended 2-0, the former Arsenal midfielder believes his side is ready to face the Blue Tigers in their upcoming 2022 FIFA World Cup and 2023 AFC (Asian Football Confederation) Asian Cup joint qualifiers round 2.

"The mood is very good. We were pleased with the performance against Qatar. We trained well and everybody is fit to play. We are looking forward to play this game tomorrow," Day went on to mention what differentiates the two nations.

"From what I saw we are behind in terms of league structure. We don't have proper academies. The equipment that the India team have, we don't have that. We are trying to change that. We have one or two clubs who are changing. It will not happen overnight, it will take some time. 

"If I were a player I would have looked forward to play in front of such a crowd. I told my players, 'You might not get a chance to play again in front of such a crowd so make the most of it'. I want them to be confident and play their natural game."

Salt Lake Stadium
Salt Lake Stadium

With knowledge of the kind of support the home side will have, the Briton has conceded that 104-ranked India who last held Qatar to a goalless draw have the advantage over a 187-ranked Bangladesh.

"If I was at home I would want to win a home game. So the home team will have an advantage. They played a good game against Qatar so they will be confident. We expect them to be more attacking than the Qatar game. So we have to split in defence. Rankings obviously matters as the teams who are higher they are there for a reason," he opined.

However, he added, "I don't think my players need extra motivation to play for country. Everyone is looking forward to it. We have to adapt to the conditions here. [The] boys are fully prepared and have to give their best. 

"We haven't decided the team yet. If we look at the history, we beat them long back (1999). There are reasons, of course. The way we played against Qatar, if we play in a similar way, we have a good chance to beat them. It is going to be a tough game. The aim is to get some point from this game."

Sunil Chhetri India Bahrain Asian Cup 2019
Sunil Chhetri India Bahrain Asian Cup 2019

India skipper Sunil Chhetri is one name Day has picked out as someone to look out for while calling for a collective effort from his side.

"Chettri is a big name in Asia. We have to mark him tightly. If we keep space to big players, they will punish you. But India have other good players who can win them but yes, we must make sure Chhetri doesn't get the ball. 

"We created some good chances against Qatar. We defended well. We caused them some problems. We have to catch ons. Qatar had two shots on target they scored both we got five we couldn't score. If we take our chances we can win against India," he reiterated.

Bangladesh Football Team
Bangladesh Football Team

Elaborating on what went wrong against Qatar, the Bangladesh coach explained, "We were fitter than Qatar. We created chances even in the end. Goal scoring we have to improve. We have to keep creating chances. We have to keep working on it and give the players the confidence. If we get some goals, that'll be pleasing for us, and hopefully we can win. 

"Since I have come in, fitness, diet has changed massively. We are creating chances we have to work on scoring. But overall there has been massive change in the team. We made good strides. We got to improve the facilities. That is something the federation and we have to work on together."

Bangladesh have former Bharat FC (now disbanded) coach Stuart Watkiss, former ATK player Mamunul Islam and goalkeeping coach Bobby Mimms who also worked with ATK. 

Day pointed out, "We have three people who have an idea about Indian football. It helps having staff who gives you an idea about the opposition. It has helped us to prepare for the India game."

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