India to begin Hero Intercontinental Cup title defence against Tajikistan
The All India Football Federation (AIFF), on Monday, announced the full fixture list for the upcoming Hero Intercontinental Cup 2019 tournament, which gets underway at the EKA Arena in Ahmedabad from July 7. India are the defending champions and will kickstart the competition with the opening match against Tajikistan.
The Blue Tigers' subsequent fixtures will be against DPR Korea on July 13 followed by Syria on July 16. After the round-robin phase concludes, the top two teams will face off in the final on July 19.
Here's the full fixtures list:
July 7: India vs Tajikistan
July 8: Syria vs DPR Korea
July 10: Tajikistan vs Syria
July 13: India vs DPR Korea
July 15: DPR Korea vs Tajikistan
July 16: India vs Syria
July 19: Final
According to the latest FIFA Rankings, Syria (rank: 83) are the best-ranked side in the four-nation tournament, followed by India (rank: 101), Tajikistan (rank: 120) and DPR Korea (rank: 121).
India will go into the tournament on the back of an encouraging showing at the King's Cup in Thailand under new head coach Igor Stimac and will look to build on it to keep hold of the Intercontinental Cup crown.