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Jordan drawn alongside Australia for 2019 Asian Cup

Jordan drawn alongside Australia for 2019 Asian Cup

The last time India participated in the continental tournament, in 2011, they were thrashed by South Korea, Australia and Bahrain, returning home bruised and battered after conceding a barrage of goals. I'm sure Zaccheroni will bring a good defensive structure to their game, which I feel they need.

The draw can be a tricky affair, and that is why the likes of Chhetri, Phil Younghusband (Philippines), former Manchester City and China star Sun Jihai, former Iran star Ali Daei had to practice dummy draws, before the actual event.

With an outstanding generation of talent, a core group of players now with invaluable experience in Asia's leading domestic competition and a wily coach who knows how to navigate his way out of the cut and thrust of tournament play, this is a wonderful opportunity for the Thais to go deep into the latter stages. The two met last September in a thrilling World Cup qualification play-off, when Australia triumphed narrowly across two legs to halt Syria's incredible run. One was against Delhi Dynamos which we totally dominated but still lost.

Since first taking part in Asian Cup qualifiers in 1972, Jordan reached the Asian Championship three times.

"Now they have a chance to get a little bit of revenge against us", Milicic said.

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The top two from each group automatically qualify to the knockout stages while the four best third placers will also make the cut. The impressive run had contributed to India returning to top 100 in Federation Internationale de Football Association rankings after a long time.

Indian football has been on the rise since the last couple of years. I think they beat Australia at home if I am not wrong. It's the pedigree that he comes with. He's going to develop at a faster rate than I or others did. Two kids are going to official ball carriers in the World Cup, one of the matches will be Brazil vs Costa Rica and the other Panama vs Belgium.

Chhetri said he was happy with the progress of Indian football but they need to play a lot more away games to test themselves.

It will be interesting to see how the Blue Tigers fare in their next campaign against tough sides like South Africa, New Zealand and Chines Taipei in the Intercontinental Cup, which gets underway in the first week of June.

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