The Indian national team head coach, Igor Stimac, announced the final 25-member squad for the upcoming Round 2 matches of the FIFA World Cup 2026 and AFC Asian Cup Saudi Arabia 2027 Preliminary Joint Qualification on Friday.

The Croatian tactician had earlier selected a 35-member provisional squad and has now trimmed it down to 25 members before departing for Abha, Saudi Arabia, on Friday.

The Blue Tigers will play the next two matches of the qualifiers against Afghanistan, both home and away. The away match will be played on March 22 at 12:30 IST, while the home fixture will take place on March 26 at the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium in Guwahati.

Stimac’s men are currently sitting third in the points table, tied on three points with Kuwait, who are ahead on goal difference.

India began their campaign with a 1-0 victory over Kuwait in Kuwait City before succumbing to a 3-0 defeat against Qatar in Bhubaneswar. Qatar lead the table with six points, while Afghanistan is yet to register a point and has conceded 12 goals in two matches.

Among the new faces, Jay Gupta and Imran Khan made it to the final squad, while Lalthathanga Khawlhring (Puitea) has been left out.

The 25-member squad is as follows:

Goalkeepers: Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, Amrinder Singh, Vishal Kaith.

Defenders: Akash Mishra, Mehtab Singh, Rahul Bheke, Nikhil Poojary, Subhasish Bose, Anwar Ali, Amey Ranawade, Jay Gupta.

Midfielders: Anirudh Thapa, Brandon Fernandes, Liston Colaco, Mahesh Singh Naorem, Sahal Abdul Samad, Suresh Singh Wangjam, Jeakson Singh Thounaojam, Deepak Tangri, Lalengmawia Ralte, Imran Khan.

Forwards: Sunil Chhetri, Lallianzuala Chhangte, Manvir Singh, Vikram Partap Singh.