A good win over lower-ranked United Arab Emirates marking its first victory of the year, an upbeat Indian football team takes on Tunisia in their second international friendly match in Dubai on Monday.

Manisha Kalyan, Pyari Xaxa, Sweety Devi and Anju Tamang scored for India on Saturday in the team’s first overseas friendly since Thomas Dennerby took charge. The friendly matches are a part of preparations for the AFC Asian Cup, which will be hosted by India in January-February.

The win against 100th ranked UAE was India’s first of the year. The Indian team have been winless in the five previous matches this year, though all of them were against higher ranked European sides.

“It was definitely a good start for the girls. That kind of a win helps to get some useful self-confidence into the players,” said Dennerby after his first international game with the Indian team.

Monday’s opponents are ranked 77th in the FIFA charts while India are at 57th.

Looking ahead to the game, Dennerby feels that though it will be a tougher challenge for the girls, the aim remains to earn a victory.

“I guess it is going to be a bit tougher against Tunisia, but we always try to win, and that is just what we will try to do,” said Dennerby.

“It is good that we will be playing a relatively tougher team like Tunisia. We need to get used to playing at a higher pace.”

Dennerby is wary of technical errors that might crop up and he said he is working on it.

“There are ups and downs in every game. There were times when we were doing really well to control the game. But there were other times when we were also trying to force the game more than we had to,” said the UEFA Pro Licensed coach.

“When you try to force the game, you tend to make small unforced errors, and those can hurt us when we play the best teams. So we need to work on eliminating these errors.”

With PTI Inputs