AFC Asian Cup 2019: India vs Thailand Preview

India vs Thailand Preview: India begin their fourth AFC Asian Cup campaign with a clash against Thailand in Group A

India are set to face Thailand their first AFC Asian Cup 2019 match at the Al Nahyan Stadium in Abu Dhabi, UAE on Thursday evening.

GameThailand vs India
DateSunday, January 6
Time7:00 PM IST

Match Preview

Following two years of playing qualifying rounds and a while of consideration, planning and diligent work in preparing, India will go up against Thailand in their first Group A match of the AFC Asian Cup 2019.

India’s first obstacle will be to keep the Thailand assault under control as they have been running wild in their the AFF Championship crusade which finished on a sharp note – they lost to Malaysia on away objectives in the two-legged semi-last. The War Elephants scored 17 objectives from their six matches at the AFF competition, without key players, for example, Teerasil Dangda and Chanathip Songkrasin.

Thailand were top choices to win the AFF Championship and the stun semi-last exit has put included weight Milovan Rajevac as he turns his center onto the Asian Cup. The 118-positioned group likes to remain sorted out yet will hope to make utilization of their pacey, dexterous players.

The Indian barrier will be put under a magnifying glass against Thailand’s assaulting players. Muangthang United’s Adisak Kraisorn is in glittering structure before objective, having gotten eight objectives in the AFF Championship to sack the best scorer grant.

India will seek after a decent protective execution and will take positives from the goalless attract against China an amicable in October. Sandesh Jhingan has lead the backline well and will bear the obligation in protection alongside first-decision goalie Gurpreet Singh Sandhu. The Bengaluru goalkeeper, notwithstanding his woeful screw up against Jordan that prompted an objective, has been incredible in the middle of the sticks in the Indian Super League (ISL).

Nose damage to Pronay Halder had kept him out of his club’s ongoing apparatuses however Stephen Constantine handled the ATK midfielder for 45 minutes against Oman in the shut entryways amicable a week ago. Halder’s quality in midfied liberates Anirudh Thapa and gives him considerably more opportunity to wander forward to join the assault. Against Thailand nonetheless, the pair could be compelled to play further and closer to their guard to fill the holes in their very own half.

Driving the assault will be the ever-present Sunil Chhetri however the type of his partner and India’s first-decision unmitigated striker Jeje Lalpekhlua is a colossal concern. While Jeje has substantiated himself at the universal stage and think of objectives when required, the Chennaiyin FC striker has not scored since June, 2018.

Constantine’s first-decision wingers, Udanta Singh and Halicharan Narzary, aren’t known for their completing ability yet offer a lot of pace and workate to raid here and there the flanks. Their range of abilities will become an integral factor to either keep the Thailand full-backs stuck in their very own half or track their canny covers at the opposite end.

Regardless of India’s amazingness over Thailand dependent on FIFA rankings, the War Elephants will represent an immense risk to India. Sensibly, evading thrashing ought to be Blue Tigers’ essential target as opposed to going hard and fast for a success.

A decent begin will surely help India’s odds of achieving the knockout stages.

Probable Lineups

Thailand (4-2-3-1): Chatchai Budprom, Theerathon Bunmathan, Pansa Hemviboon, Chalermpong Kerdkaew, Tristan Do, Thitipan Puangchan, Tanaboon Kesarat, Sumanya Purisai, Chanathip Songkrasin, Adisak Kraisorn, Teerasil Dangda

India (4-4-2): Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Narayan Das, Anas Edathodika, Sandesh Jhingan, Pritam Kotal, Halicharan Narzary, Pronay Halder, Anirudh Thapa, Udanta Singh, Sunil Chhetri, Jeje Lalpekhlua

Key Players


Thailand’s most lethal player will be midfielder Chanathip Songkrasin. The 25-year old has been a valuable player both for his club and country. Songkrasin, also known as “Messi Jay” will also play a key role. He is quick and will be a real threat to the Indian defense. Teerasil Dangda is another player to watch out for. He is a very clinical striker and will give the Indian defense a tough time.


Sunil Chhetri will lead India’s attack. The experienced striker will have a huge role at the front, score goals and create chances. However, his co-striker Jeje Lalpekhlua’s poor form will be a concern for India. Gurpreet Sandhu is expected to have a busy day between the sticks.


Rankings go in favor of the Blue Tigers. Thailand has made some glittering performances recently and has star performers from the J1 League. However, Stephen Constantine’s team looks confident to pull off a thriller. Goals will be at a premium.

Predicted Score – Thailand 0:1 India

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