The Indian women’s football team will face Equatorial Guinea to kick off its campaign in the 2019 COTIF Cup in Valencia, Spain, on Thursday.
Speaking ahead of the match, head coach Maymol Rocky opined that playing tough teams in the competition will put her team in good stead.
“Definitely, the match against Guinea will be a tough one. African teams are always difficult to play against. They are strong, they are tough, they are speedy,” she said.
“That match will give us a proper estimation of where we stand against quality opponents, and how we can play against them.”
India had a three-week-long camp in New Delhi ahead of their sojourn to the Iberian Peninsula.
“We have had a good three weeks of preparation with the squad, where we have worked on a number of things to improve the overall game that we play,” said Rocky, adding, “We also have a number of new faces in the squad, and we are hoping that their improvement will go on to increase our squad strength in the future.”
“The main aim for us in the COTIF Cup is to get some international matches under our belt. We will be facing some tough teams this time, and that will really give us the match-experience that we are looking for, in order to take this team forward,” she continued.
Having registered a massive six-place rise to number 57 in the FIFA rankings, the Indian team will now be looking to build on this progress, with one eye on the World Cup Qualifiers next year.
“For me, right now, the most important thing is to play these matches against top teams in order to get our team ready for the challenges ahead,” Rocky said.