Fri. Jun 14th, 2024

VietNamNet Bridge – Having won their first national Super Cup, a buoyant SHB Da Nang team are preparing to host Myanmar’s Ayeyawady United in the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup today.

Da Nang, who trounced Sai Gon Xuan Thanh Cement 4-0 to lift their latest trophy last weekend, know little about their opponents, who they will face first in a group that also contains Kelatan from Malaysia and Maizya from the Maldives.

Coach Le Huynh Duc has sounded a note of caution.

“We have yet to update the information we have about Ayeyawady. We had a three-day break from the Super Cup, while our rivals have had two days to prepare for the match,” he told reporters at a press conference yesterday.

He added Tran Hai Lam would sit on bench today after suffering a minor knee injury in the weekend match.

“We will play tactically for the AFC Cup curtain-raiser. We will set up a solid defence in the first 15 minutes before adapting our style,” Duc revealed.

The 41-year-old coach stressed that he would pick a strong team including Argentinean top scorer Gaston Merlo, Tanzanian Danny David, Romanian Sabin-Cosmin Goia and local maestro Nguyen Minh Phuong.

Phuong, 34, who captains the team, told Viet Nam News that he was expecting tough opposition.

“We often play against players from Myanmar as a result of our many Southeast Asian games. We know we will have to treat them with respect and be on our best form,” he said.

Da Nang reached the quarter-finals of the competition in 2010 and are looking to build on their fine recent form to progress further.

Marjan Sekulovski, Ayeyawady’s man in the dugout, also claimed he knew little about the Da Nang team.

“We know they are strong and have won the Vietnamese Super Cup. I can not predict anything with certainty before the first kick, but I expect an exciting match tomorrow,” he said.

“We have talented young players from the national U-23 team as well as some foreigners in our ranks.”

The Macedonian revealed that Japanese midfielder Satoshi Otomo has failed to recover in time from an injury, and will not feature.

However, his line-up is expected to include Slovakia’s Miroslav Latiak, Marjan Belchev of Macedonia and several national team members.

The match will be played at 4.30pm at Chi Lang Stadium, while the second leg match will take place in Myanmar on April 23.

Source: VNS

By vivian