Squad shake-up coming a er Vietnam setback
MYANMAR national team coach Gerd Zeise hinted that there would be changes to his starting line-up before facing Cambodia tomorrow following the White Angels’ disappointing 2-1 loss to Vietnam in their opening AFF Suzuki Cup group B match on November 20.
Against a seasoned Vietnam squad, Zeise showed the same line-up deployed in recent friendlies against Indonesia and Oman, in which the White Angels failed to score. He was disappointed in particular by the performance of midfielder Ye Ko Oo and striker Win Naing Soe, and also called out for condemnation recentaddition Kaung Satt Naing, who was called up as a replacement for national team star Kyaw Ko Ko.
“We made a lot of mistakes on the field. We gave up the lead goal after Ye Ko Oo missed a pass. Another, Win Naing Soe, is a youth player, and he couldn’t influence the match. Some of our younger players still need more experience to be ready for top-level competition, and we saw that tonight,” he said.
Myanmar struggled to find their form in the first half, as the re-tooled striking line continued to make its absence felt. Meanwhile, Vietnam steadily controlled the game flow, with Nguyen Van Quyet converting their first goal in the 24th minute on a neat one-two set-up by Truong Luong Xuan after Ye Ko Oo’s misstep.
Myo Ko Tun came on to replace Ye Ko Oo in the 46th minute and Than Paing was subbed in for Win Naing Soe in the 66th. The substitutions steadied the midfield, as the Angels began to retain possession and develop the attack. Striker Aung Thu attmpted to set up Myo Ko Tun in the 63rd minute and Nanda Lin Kyaw in the 71st minute before finding the back of the net himself in the 73rd, with Myo Ko Tun providing the assist.
Golden Stars captain Le Cong Vinh struck back in the 80th minute, however, erasing fans’ feverish hopes of managing a draw against the Group B favourites. Aung Thu was booked for a foul two minutes later, spelling the end of Myanmar’s comeback chances.
“It was a good game. My players did their best, and the match was played at high quality. I’m satisfied with the result, and with my players’ showing, especially their mental toughness,” Vietnam coach Nguyen Huu Thang said after the game.
The White Angels were clearly overmatched, called for 19 fouls to the Golden Stars’ seven and receiving three yellow cards, starting with Ye Ko Oo in the 36th minute. And while the White Angels managed 13 shots, only four of them were on target, the same tally as Vietnam.
“We defeated ourselves tonight. We made a lot of mistakes, particularly in the first half. Both teams really came together in the second half, though – if we can apply that secondhalf performance against Cambodia, we’ll be alright,” Zeise said.
“Cambodia isn’t a favourite in group B, but they’re a dangerous team. We need to be careful,” he added.
Cambodia lost their opening match to Malaysia 3-2, but rolled through Laos, Brunei and TimorLeste to clinch the last spot in the tournament. They dropped recent friendlies to Singapore and Hong Kong, but thrashed Sri Lanka last month 4-0.
The White Angels will need a strong showing from their modified line-up tomorrow if they hope to advance from the group stage, as they’ll face Malaysia, tipped for the group’s runner-up spot, in their final group match on November 26.
Vietnam will face Malaysia at 3pm tomorrow before Myanmar plays Cambodia at 6pm. Both matches will be played at Yangon’s Thuwunna YTC Stadium.
There had been seven weeks when NFL kickers matched the old record of 10 conversions, but the most recent was the second week of the 1985 campaign.
A major reason for the lack of success was last year’s rule change that pushed back to length of conversion kicks from a distance of 17 yards to almost double that distance.
Two-point conversion attempts remain near the goal line, prompting NFL teams to go for the extra point with a run or pass play about twice as much as they did before the kick was pushed back.
Overall, the dip in the success rates of conversion kicks since the change was made has been only about 5 percent. –
Myanmar national team captain Yan Aung Kyaw sets up a cross against Vietnam in their 2016 AFF Suzuki Cup group B match on November 20. Vietnam won 2-1.