| BANGKOK (Jan 13, 2007) – Myanmar will opt for more attacking play while opponents Malaysia will be alert to the danger when both sides clash in their second match in Group A of the Asean Football Championship at the Supachalasai Stadium here tomorrow.
Myanmar had to defend for long periods in their 1-1 draw with Thailand in their opening clash but a defensive mentality, said the Myanmar head coach, was not an option against Malaysia.
Coach U Sann Win said Malaysia played very well in their 4-0 win over Philippines in the group’s curtain raiser but that his team “will try to win” when they meet the Malaysians in the next round of the competition.
“Malaysia is a strong team,” added Sann Win who has not wavered from his pre-tournament prediction that for the two semi-finals slots from Group A, the candidates are Thailand, Malaysia and Myanmar.
However, Myanmar will miss the services of first choice goalkeeper Aung Aung Oo who dislocated a finger in a sterling display against Thailand. Sann Win said substitute goalkeeper Kyaw Zin Htet, who is 19 years old, was equally adept.
Malaysian head coach Norizan Bakar does not have any injury problems in his team which he said would be prepared for an attack-minded Myanmar.
“We know Myanmar to be a team that never gives space to their opponents,” commented Norizan.
He added: “They have the urgency but we will be prepared for their brand of football.”
Further comments ahead of the Group A encounters between Malaysia and Myanmar and Thailand and the Philippines in the Asean Football Championship tomorrow in Bangkok.
MALAYSIA HEAD COACH NORIZAN BAKAR
“We started with a win. There were some weaknesses in the team which we will work at on training today.
“The first game is finished, it is history – congratulations to the boys.
“We can see from the match between Myanmar and Thailand (1-1) that Myanmar still have a brand of attacking football and we will have to be prepared for that.
“It is a vital game in our efforts to progress from this group (to the semi-finals).
“I will still maintain a winning side – all the players are free from injury.
“Myanmar have an urgency about their play, they go all out. They are aggressive, I suppose. We have to be prepared for their brand of football.
“In this tournament it is game, rest, game, rest, game, rest – I hope the players have enough time to recover (from the opening match).”
MYANMAR HEAD COACH U SANN WIN
“Malaysia played very good against the Philippines (4-0). They are a very strong team but our boys will try and win.
“Our goalkeeper (Aung Aung Oo) has a broken finger and will be out for six weeks His replacement is very young but he is a good goalkeeper.
“Our captain Soe Myat Min was injured in a tournament in Myanmar (before we came to Thailand). He is with the team but will not be able to play in the group stages. He should be available for the semi-final if we get there.
“Lack of discipline is no longer a problem with our team. Discipline is now good, they try hard at this.”
THAILAND ASSISTANT HEAD COACH SOMPOL CHOMCHUEN
“We tried to do our best against Myanmar but we lost two points.
“Against the Philippines we will try and get four goals, that is the target.
“It was a hard game against Myanmar and we have some injury worries. Kiatisuk Senamuang injured his hip (falling heavily) and his chances of making the game are 70-30.
“There will be some changes from the side that played against Myanmar. We will rest some of our first team players.
“From what I saw from their game, the Philippines ability and technique are not so good.”
PHILIPPINES ASSISTANT HEAD COACH MARLON MARO
“I think our captain Alexander Borromeo is out for the whole tournament.
“He is at the hospital now and the doctor said he has a MCL (medial collateral ligament) injury to the knee.
“The loss to Malaysia was not acceptable for Philippine football. It was a shocking result which we did not expect.
“We had good results in our Singapore training camp and the way we played last night was very poor compared to there.
“But we have to leave it behind us and rebound for the second game. That means we have to improve.
“Before coming here we expected difficulties up front because of the absence of Philip Younghusband, our main striker. That showed against Malaysia when we missed some chances.”