Sunday , February 5 2023

Thailand will play attacking football against Vietnam: coach Polking

Thailand coach Mano Polking said Thailand will keep attacking in the second leg of AFF Cup final against Vietnam on Monday, despite their current advantages.

In the first leg on Friday, Thailand got two away goals to draw Vietnam 2-2. The away goal rule will make them champions if they draw 0-0 or 1-1 in the second leg on Monday.

“We don’t enter [the second leg] with a defensive mindset, but will play with our usual style. Thailand always enter a game with the target of winning,” Polking said in the press conference on Sunday.

Besides the away goals, Thailand will also get to play at home with the support of fans. The only problem they have is the injury of key striker Teerasil Dangda, who is the top scorer of the tournament with six goals.

Polking said he is still keeping track of Dangda’s recovery. “We miss him, he is a great player. But the first leg showed that without Dangda, the others still did a good job.”

Although having more advantages, Polking reminded his players to stay focused from the start and play well as they did in Hanoi.

“We had a great result when leading 2-1 [in the first leg], but Vietnam equalizing meant the game tomorrow will be open to chances for both teams,” Polking added. “Vietnam have a high fighting spirit. They will not give up and will fight until the last second. They are tough warriors.”

Polking has spent the past 10 years coaching Thai clubs and their national team. He also coached V. League club HCMC FC from 2020-2021. In April last year, he led the U23 Thailand team in SEA Games 31 with the target of winning the gold medal but lost to Vietnam in the final.

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