MELAKA, Nov 10 — After a timid opening win, Harimau Malaya must raise their game several notches when they entertain Laos in their second Group A match on home ground on Monday.
National team manager Datuk Mohd Yusoff Mahadi said the national football team showed a lot of weaknesses despite edging Cambodia 1-0 on Thursday.
He said head coach Tan Cheng Hoe and his assistants had a lot of work to do to whip the players into shape for the Laos game.
“It was important that we won our first match and collect all three points, but the players failed to showcase their true abilities,” he said when contacted by Bernama here today.
In their opening Group A match at the Olympic Stadium in Phnom Penh on Thursday, Malaysia got the only goal of the match in the 30th minute through experienced striker Norshahrul Idlan Talaha.
Mohd Yusoff, who is also the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) deputy president, said he received a lot of flak and feedback after the first game.
While attributing their nervy start to a lack of understanding among the players, he expects the slim win to fire them up for the match against Laos and strengthen their position in the group.
“If we want to go further and be seen as title contenders, the coaching team must get their tactics spot on and the players must improve their performance.
“Although, on paper, we should have no problem beating Laos at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil, our players had better not underestimate them,” he said.
Mohd Yusoff urged fans to turn up in full force at the stadium to spur the national players on. — Bernama