VIENTIANE (15 Nov 2018) – With some match time behind them now, both Laos and Myanmar are better prepared for their next Group A battle here tomorrow. Laos have played two tough matches, and lost both, while Myanmar recovered from a goal to win their opening game on Monday.
“After two games, we are getting better. We were unlucky in Malaysia, we could have picked up one point. Moving forward, we are physically and mentally ready for tomorrow (against Myanmar),” Laos coach, V. Sundramoorthy explained today.
Laos had turned in a fine performance against Malaysia where they snatched the lead after seven minutes. Their backline mounted a solid defence which frustrated the Malaysians numerous times, but they faltered in the 86th minute and eventually lost 3-1. “Our boys are improving. We did well up to the 86th minute, we have many young players, what we need is experienced heads to takes us through to the last few minutes.”
Sundram is aware of the threat that lies ahead of his team but he is hopeful that the experience of the earlier matches will help them tomorrow. Playing at home, Laos will want to make up for their earlier losses. Although it’s tough to make the cut, Laos will want to walk away with a positive result.
But Myanmar also need the points and they feel they have overcome the jitters of the opening match at home and are better prepared to take on Laos. Myanmar coach, Antoine Hey commented on the pressure the team faced in their first game. “We have seen in earlier matches how home teams faced problems. The first home game is especially difficult, players are nervous due to the atmosphere and the pressure. It’ll be interesting to see how Vietnam copes with the pressure of playing at home tomorrow.”
The Myanmar coach explained that his team had started badly in the first half but improved in the second and he expects them to pick up from where they left off in the last game. Myanmar are expected to go on the offensive early in a game they must win to remain in contention and keep close with the group leaders.
Malaysia top the group with six points (victories over Cambodia and Laos) which means Myanmar can’t afford to drop any points tomorrow. Vietnam and Myanmar are tied on three points each.
In the other Group A match tomorrow, Vietnam hosts Malaysia in a match that has fans from both countries on edge.