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FIFA qualifiers: India will give Oman a fight today, says Sunil Chhetri

Despite conceding that Middle Eastern side is a better team, star striker says his outfit will play without pressure

Bangalore: Star striker Sunil Chhetri yesterday conceded that Oman are a better side than his team but asserted that the Indians will play without any pressure when they take on Oman in their qualification match for the 2018 FIFA World Cup here today.

Sunil Chhetri (centre) attends a practice session with his India teammates at Bangalore's Kanteerava Stadium yesterday. Pic/PTI
Sunil Chhetri (centre) attends a practice session with his India teammates at Bangalore's Kanteerava Stadium yesterday. Pic/PTI  

Responding to a query about India's chances against Oman, Chhetri said, "Let us be very clear in our minds, that we are playing a very good side. Oman are a better side than us. We need to give our best, and have to be positive and make the rivals realise we are giving them a fight.

Clean slate
"We have young players and they have a clean mind, which is not under pressure or any kind of tension — tension springing from past track record against rivals like Oman. This should work to our advantage," he said during a press conference.

While India are ranked 141 in the world, Oman are 101. Asked about the army training which the entire team and support staff underwent at the Army Corps Centre here, Chhetri said the exercise brought the players together but it was not something which would do wonders for the team overnight.

"The training was good which brought us together, but it is not what has been highlighted by the media as a game-changer. It is not something that will make Ninjas out of this exercise," he said.

Indian footballers had undergone army training as a new team building exercise, where footballers were put through obstacle courses consisting of 21 different barriers and also team building recreational games.

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