10 October 2012

Coach's half-time pep talk that spurred the boys

Wednesday, October 10, 2012
KWON Oh-son's half-time team talk sure woke the national football team up. Down 1-0 at the break, the Wasps scored three goals in the span of 18 minutes to defeat Cambodia 3-2 in the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup qualifiers yesterday a vital win which kept alive their hopes of progressing to next month's main event.

The pressure was on the team to perform and the national coach knew just how important a win which would be their first in four years would be if they wanted to avoid disappointing the thousands of football fans back home.

"I told them that everyone back home is watching us and waiting for us to win the match," said Kwon in an interview with The Brunei Times after the win.

"We need to put in everything to ensure we get all three points.

"We knew the problems and we had to fix them.

"Why were we losing?

"There was no ball pressure and we were not moving enough.

"Even world class players cannot do anything on the field if they just stand still!

"The players were only thinking of attacking but lacked the concentration in the first half.

"There was no control or focus.

"They were a little overconfident and had a very loose attitude to start the match.

"There was no cover play and there was no organisation earlier in the match but it was fixed (for the second half)," explained the South Korean.

The national coach knew that they couldn't afford any slip ups and the players responded well to his encouragement.

Their task isn't over yet though, as they now face must-win matches against Laos tomorrow and Timor Leste on Saturday.

"We had a three-day break and have prepared to be ready mentally, and we must keep it going," said Kwon.

"We must continue to be focused and maintain full concentration throughout the remaining matches.

"But today (Tuesday) I'm grateful and thankful to the players for delivering the win for everyone," said Kwon, adding that it was compulsory they win the next two matches to progress. The Brunei Times 

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