PETALING JAYA: Kedah went to Cambodia to prep up for their all-important Asian Champions League (ACL) preliminary round match against Tai Po of Hong Kong – but are now wondering if they left their scoring boots behind in Alor Setar.
The Red Eagles kicked off the tour in Phnom Penh with a 1-0 win over Visakha (Jan 7), lost 2-3 to Nagaworld (Jan 9), beat Boeung Ket Angkor 4-1 (Jan 10) and managed a 1-0 win over Angkor Tiger (Jan 12) thanks to Zaquan Adha Abdul Razak’s winner.
Kedah will wrap up their tour against Phnom Penh Crown today and a big win might boost morale.
Coach Aidil Sharin, however, is not fretting. He says scoring a big number of goals was not his main priority in the tour.
The 42-year-old coach said his focus was to get the team ready for the two matches against Tai Po in Alor Setar on Jan 21.
“We are in the pre-season, we make changes in every game by using a different set of players... You can’t have the same first XI playing when you have to play five games in nine days, ” said the Singaporean.
“Angkor were tired because they played two days earlier and it was the same with us.
“We needed to rotate players in that win... our objective in the pre-season is still the same – which is to get everyone to match fitness.”
“We are getting better... I see the players are learning in every game which is positive. What’s important is how we are shaping up for the ACL games against Tai Po.”
Commenting on the last match of the tour against Phnom Penh Crown, Aidil said he expected a tough match against the former Cambodian champions.
“Every game is difficult and different. We must take it one game at a time.
“We a high intensity game against Angkor and we have a short time to recover.
“We will prepare but it’s not easy in this hot weather, ” said Aidil.
“I have played Phnom Penh Crown before in the AFC Cup, they have a lot of youngsters and they always mean business.
“They play fast football, I have watched their game against Angkor but we will be ready.”
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