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Indian Women's Team profile for the AFC Women's Asian Cup 2022

India gets ready to host the AFC Women's Asian Cup for only the second time as the tournament commences on Wednesday, 20th January 2022. Check out the Indian women’s team profile for AFC Women's Asian Cup 2022 and other details.

Last updated: 19.01.2022
Indian Women Team profile for the AFC Women's Asian Cup 2022

India gets ready to host the AFC Women's Asian Cup for only the second time as the tournament commences on Wednesday, 20th January 2022. This will be the 20th edition of the tournament. Japan are the two times defending champions of the tournament having won it in 2014 and 2018 respectively. 

As a host nation, India will be thriving to do well and hope to go as far in this prestigious tournament as their strength can take. This is the first time since 1979 the country is hosting a major women's football event so expectations are building up on the current Indian women's national team holding a lot of promise. 


Covid proved to be a barrier for the women's team to have an ideal preparation for the tournament. There was absence of women's football action in the country for almost a year until a few set of friendlies in early 2021. With the domestic league disrupted, the Blue Tigresses failed to deliver in the three friendlies against Serbia, Uzbekistan and Belarus. However, the end of last year was something to cheer on. Positive atmosphere prevailed when India defeated UAE in a friendly by 4-1 in October followed by a narrow 1-0 defeat to Tunisia and consecutive victories over Bahrain (0-5) & Chinese Taipei (1-0). 

Indian women's team then traveled to Brazil for a historical tour to face the Selecao, Chile and Venezuela in a four nation international women's football tournament. Manisha Kalyan became the first Indian footballer women or men to score against Brazil in the 6-1 loss, a remarkable achievement for her and the country. The scoreline didn't told the story of the magnificent performance our girls putted in the game. While wins were predictably hard to obtain against these top nations in world football, Indian women's team made the nation proud once more scoring through Dangmei Grace in the 2-1 loss to Venezuela after going down 3-0 against Chile. Upon returning to India, the national team started their  pre-tournament preparations in Kerala. 


The Indian women's national team landed in Mumbai last week. Coach Thomas Dennerbry announced the final list of  23 player squad on Tuesday, January 11th. 

Goalkeepers: Linthoingambi Devi, Aditi Chauhan, Sowmiya N 

Defenders: Dalima Chhibber, Sweety Devi Ngangbam, Ritu Rani, Loitongbam Ashalata Devi, Manisa Panna, Hemam Shilky Devi, Sanju Yadav

Midfielders: Yumnam Kamala Devi, Anju Tamang, Karthika Angamuthu, Nongmeithem Ratanbala Devi, Naorem Priyangka Devi, Indumathi Kathiresan

Forwards: Manisha Kalyan, Grace Dangmei, Pyari Xaxa, Renu, Sumati Kumari, Sandhiya Ranganathan, Mariyammal Balamurugan

Coach: Thomas Dennerbry 

Profile :

The team will certainly miss the service of their star player, Ngangom Bala Devi. She became the face of the team when she signed a professional contract with Scottish Women's Premier Club Rangers and became the first Indian women to score in a professional league. Unfortunately, Bala suffered a anterior cruciate ligament or ACL injury while on club duty and is set to miss out on the tournament. Although she will be a big miss, the attacking department look sold with Manisha, Grace, Pyari Xaxa and Senior Women's Championship top scorer, Sandhiya Ranganathan in the ranks. 

Other exclusion from the squad has been Martina Thochom and Babysana Devi both who are defensive midfielders. It is left to see how India perform without a natural number six in the squad. Defender Ashalata Devi (28) and midfielder Kamala Devi (29) are the two most experienced campaigner selected in the national team with 91 caps between them. Priyangka Devi and Sumati Kumari are the two debutants selected for the tournament. 

Contest and venue 

The 2022 edition of the AFC Women's Asian Cup has been expanded from eight teams to twelve for the very first time. Those nations have been divided into three groups. The top two teams from each group and the two best third-placed teams will qualify for the quarter-finals. The competition will serve as the final stage of the Asian qualification for the 2023 FIFA World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. As Australia has qualified for the World Cup being the co-host, five best teams from the Asian Cup will get a direct berth into the group stages of the competition. Two more nations will advance to inter confederation playoffs. 

Games are scheduled to be played in three cities - Navy Mumbai, Mumbai and Pune. DY Patil, Chhatrapati Sports Complex and the Mumbai Football Arena will be the three stadiums to host the games of the tournament. 

Opponents for India in Group A


India will face competition debutant Iran in their first game on the opening day. Iran reached the group stages of the 2022 AFC Asian Cup by defeating Jordan in a dramatic penalty shootout in the final game of the three nation qualification round also involving  Bangladesh. It was a winner takes all game after both the sides won against the Bengal Tigresses. Iran are ranked 72nd in World rankings but are placed 14th in terms of Asian football rankings.

The country from the Western Asia only had their women's football team playing their first international game in 2005. 

They have come a long way since then and will serve as a tricky opposition for India to begin the tournament against. 

Chinese Taipei 

This is the 12th appearance for Chinese Taipei in the AFC Asian Cup. They also won the competition in 1977 in their debut year and then going on to win it for consecutive times in 1979 and 1981. Chinese Taipei are ranked 40th in the FIFA World rankings as well and are returning back to the Asian Cup since they last featured in the contest in 2008. Like Iran, Chinese Taipei will be unpredictable opponents but with loads of experience in the competition. India have to manage maximum number of points from these two games in order to get into the quarterfinals and at least stand a chance to qualify for the inter consideration playoffs. 

China PR 

The hardest task for India however is to overcome China's challenge in their third game of the group. The most successful team in the competition with eight titles, the recent one being in 2006, China PR are ranked 17th in the FIFA rankings. The Steel Roses competed in last year's Olympics in Tokyo but finished last in their group consisting of eventual semifinalist Netherlands, Brazil and Zambia. But China are one of the favourites again to lift the coveted Asian Cup trophy and seal a place in the World Cup. They will use this competition to rekindle their best football and are aiming to be the group winners in this lot. A draw against China will be huge if India manage to gather  necessary points for qualification. 


VS Iran - 20th January, DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai

VS Chinese Taipei - 23rd January, DY Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai

VS China PR - 26th January, Mumbai Football Arena, Mumbai 

All games kickoff at 7:30 PM 


AIFF have struck a deal with Eurosport to telecast the AFC Women's Asian Cup while live streaming will be available on Jio TV. 

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