Hagatna (Guam): Indian football team coach Stephen Constantine urged his boys on Sunday to shake off jet lag and adjust quickly to the overseas conditions here before facing Guam on Tuesday in a 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier. India lost their first match of the second round of qualifiers, going down 1-2 against Oman on June 11. India are in Group D along with Iran, Guam, Oman and Turkmenistan for the preliminary league with top two finishers progressing to the next phase of the competition.
The team arrived here on Saturday after an exhaustive 16-hour trip. “It was a very long trip. We spent a lot of time in the air and it was very tiring,” Constantine said in a release. The team conducted its first training session since arrival on Sunday. “The body needs to adapt to the different surroundings, the jet lag is always there and obviously, there’s a change in the time zone as well. But it was very important to train,” Constantine added. “We did some core stability exercises, some running and lots of stretching. The reason for that was that we didn’t want the players to go to sleep immediately and wanted all to get a good sleep in the time frame where we are.” Constantine said it was imperative that the world No.141 team adjusts to the foreign conditions quickly, which was why he conducted a practice session at the artifical surface of the Guam National Football Stadium on Sunday. “It was a nice session. It’s an artificial surface and we worked the ball around getting a feel of the pitch,” Constantine added. “It’s important that we adjust to everything, and fast.” World No.174 Guam beat Turkmenistan by a solitary goal in their first match at home on June 11.