New Delhi: Santosh trophy team is in a confident mood as they look to defend their title, which they won 2 years back. Manipur is the one state that had benefited immensely from the change in the domicile rule of the All India Football Federation. This made it compulsory for players to represent their home state rather than the state where they played their football. "We feel very proud to play for our home state since this will bring recognition back in Manipur," said Tongbram Narendra, Member, Manipur Football Team. Worrying factor Even though the Manipur team is not short on superstars, the most worrying factor for the coach at this point happens to be injuries to some of the key players. While Manitombi Singh, Benny and Rajesh Matai are still recovering from their injuries, East Bengal's Bijen Singh has so far been knocked out of action due to high fever. "Right now we are not at full strength even though our players from the Indian team have returned. Two players in particular, Bijen Singh and Benny, a new player from Manipur, are not completely fit so we have not been able to have a complete practice session," said Singh. Being defending champions always has its advantages. Manipur have been given a bye straight into the Groupstage of the quarterfinals which kick off on October 21 where they will be the top seeds in Pool A.
Topics : Football