• Sunday, Dec 08, 2019
  • Last Update : 11:50 pm

Confident Bangladesh ready for Oman challenge

  • Published at 09:35 pm November 13th, 2019
Bangladesh
Bangladesh players during training in Muscat Wednesday BFF

The men in red and green, sitting at the bottom of Group E, earned their only point in the joint qualifiers with a resilient 1-1 draw against India away in their last game after losing their first two matches against Afghanistan (1-0) and Qatar (2-0).

Bangladesh will be looking forward to continue their fine run against the giants and scrape out at least a point against much higher-ranked Oman during their fourth group stage match in the second round of joint qualifying for the World Cup and Asian Cup away in Muscat Thursday.

The game kicks off at Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex at 9pm, Bangladesh standard time. 

Bangla TV will telecast the match live.

The men in red and green, sitting at the bottom of Group E, earned their only point in the joint qualifiers with a resilient 1-1 draw against India away in their last game after losing their first two matches against Afghanistan (1-0) and Qatar (2-0).

Oman, on the other hand, sit second in the table, only four points behind leader Qatar and will be looking to reduce the gap with the Asian champion with a win. 

Oman defeated India away and Afghanistan at home but conceded their lone defeat in Qatar in the last match.

Jamie Day said again that it would be their toughest game in the joint qualifiers not only because the opponent are 100 places above them in the Fifa ranking, but also for playing away, and against a fast attacking side. 

The English coach urged his charges to work hard, be organized and play with a good tempo like they did against India.

Jamal Bhuiyan and Co have created lots of chances in the last two games but managed to convert only one of those through Saad Uddin’s header. 

The players worked on finishing in training in order to increase their conversion rate.

Oman have pacy attackers on both the wings, backed by the full-backs from where they created lots of chances through crosses, and got the goals. 

Under new Dutch head coach Erwin Koeman, elder brother of footballing great Ronald, Oman won six straight matches before conceding their first defeat against Qatar in the last outing.

Bangladesh’s defence line is the youngest in terms of age and experience among the five teams in the group and their eldest defender’s age (25) is below than Oman’s youngest defender (26).

But it is the young spirited defence that has shown promise so far. 

The team defending will be the key as Day said Wednesday, “We have to be solid all over the pitch defensively.”

Arriving in Oman 10 days earlier and playing a practice match against a top-flight club helped them to adapt with the conditions.

The players have finally recovered from fatigue after playing the Sheikh Kamal International Club Cup last month with little time to rest in recent times.

Day hinted to keep the squad almost unchanged from the last game, but the more experienced Tutul Hossain Badshah’s height against tall Oman attackers could prove to be a factor in earning himself a place at center defence at the expense of youngster Riyadul Hasan Rafi.  

Captain Jamal Bhuiyan is confident of their capabilities. 

“Oman are very organized and have good players who can score goals. It will be our job to prevent them from scoring. We have been training very well. We will go to the game with 100% confidence,” said Jamal.

Koeman, the former Dutch midfielder who was the assistant coach of Everton and Southampton under Ronald, is wary of the visitor after the way they fought against Qatar and India. 

He admitted to training his players how to get space in the backline.

Lowest ranked team in the group, Bangladesh have nothing to lose and everything to gain in the game as they bid to continue their recent run of form against the giants.

WHAT THEY SAID

Jamie Day

This will be our toughest match so far as Oman are a very good side and we are away from home. It's all extremely tough for our players to keep performing against teams that are technically better than us like they have so I want to try and reach the levels we have shown recently.

Erwin Koeman

We will play against Bangladesh but it is all about us. We will make the game because we had a lot of box sessions and will be trying to get the space and avail the changes. It is interesting game but we know how to play. It is all about the form on the day and I am very confident.