AIFF yet to receive official confirmation for Asian Games 2018 participation, says India coach Stephen Constantine

Mumbai: Indian national team head coach Stephen Constantine on Saturday confirmed that the All India Football Federation (AIFF) is yet to receive any written or official confirmation from the Indian government or the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) regarding the participation of the Indian U-23 team at the 2018 Asian Games in Jakarta in August.

File image of Indian football hed coach Stephen Constantine involved in a training. AIFF

File image of Indian football head coach Stephen Constantine involved in a training. AIFF

The IOA on Friday confirmed through Secretary General Rajeev Mehta that the football team has been given the green light to participate in the Jakarta Games. “Football is improving. The team is now in 16th position but I hope it will do well to be above 10th spot this time. So, we have cleared men’s football team," Mehta told PTI on Friday.

However, speaking to the media ahead of the senior team's Intercontinental Cup final against Kenya, Constantine revealed that the team is yet to hear from the government about the issue.

"The snippets of news that I am getting that the Olympic committee and the government have decided to send us to the Asian Games, but they have not officially conveyed it to us. We have not received anything in writing," Constantine said.

Hoping that the notification arrives soon, Constantine confirmed that he will hold the preparatory camp for the same in the coming month.

"If that is the case, I am very thankful, it’s a great move by them. It is certainly going to give our boys more exposure and that would be the next camp next month," he added.

Earlier in the week, Constantine had urged the government to allow the Indian U-23 side to take part in the competition that allows only three senior players to be a part of the squad. India have 11 players under that age group in their senior side and the Englishman feels the Asian Games will provide those players with a great learning curve for members of his team ahead of the AFC Asian Cup in 2019.

India, who are stepping up preparations for the continental championships in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), will play Kenya in the final of the Intercontinental Cup in Mumbai on Sunday.

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Updated Date: Jun 09, 2018 15:26:05 IST

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