Solari aims to maintain JDT’s domination

ISKANDAR PUTERI: Johor Darul Ta’zim’s (JDT) new head coach, Esteban Solari aims to continue the club’s domination in the Malaysian league.

The 42-year-old former Argentina player who signed a one-year contract with the club, said he was ready to repeat JDT’s achievements and it was a big responsibility for him to maintain their excellent performance.

He said based on the team’s sterling reputation throughout the M-League last year, he will share his experience with the team to ensure that they will go higher not only in the M-League but also in the AFC Champions League (ACL).

Despite taking on a difficult task, he was optimistic about JDT’s capabilities with facilities that the club have and a collection of quality players.

“We are going to focus day by day, step by step, we have plans to improve ... the physical, the medical and also the tactical areas. we will work day by day with the players. Preparations are being made early, to form a strong team in facing the challenge of this new season.

“JDT are a successful team so the responsibility is big, we take it, we will do the best, we will work and sweat everyday to make sure the team will be at the next level.

“Even if it’s hard and difficult, I know we have everything to achieve this goal,” he said at a press conference yesterday.

Solari added that the starting line-up for the Super League, which starts next month will depend on the players’ performance during pre-season friendly matches with football clubs Rostov, TBC, Levski Sofia, Lokomotiv Moscow and Zenit St Petersburg which will be held in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

‘The competition is huge among the players, and so, we will use the five friendly games in Dubai to choose and find the first eleven to play in February,” he said.

Solari was named JDT’s new head coach on Dec 1 as a replacement for Hector Bidoglio who was appointed as their technical director while Alistair Edwards was promoted to become the club’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Solari has coached Argentina’s national youth squads for five years, namely the Under-19, 20 and 23 teams. — Bernama

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