Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Learning from our mistakes

Cambodia coach Scott O'Donell (left) and the Laos team manager at last night's press conference
At the press conference following last night's BIDC Cup match where Cambodia beat Laos 2-1 in a nail-biting game, the Cambodia national coach, Scott O'Donell, gave his views on what had just taken place.
"I am happy we won but not happy with the performance at all. The first 20 minutes was good and then we started making some silly mistakes and you couldn't have known Laos had 10 men for the last 30 minutes because they dominated possession and created a few chances. Its a good lesson for us. We've got to start learning how to defend leads. As soon as we scored 2 goals we stopped playing. We've got to learn to do better. It was a very frustrating and disappointing 2nd half performance from us.
"When we are under pressure, we make mistakes and make wrong decisions and that's what tournaments like this are all about, learning from our mistakes. Once again we conceded a goal from an unnecessary free-kick, we've got to stop doing that and we've got to learn or we'll get punished.
"We knew they left space between their back-line and the keeper and Kumpheak made an excellent run to beat the offisde trap, and a good finish (for the 1st goal). Then Soseila did the same, timing the run, good delivery of the ball which is something we've been working on in training, but after that we stopped doing it. I don't think we got in behind them again after that. When we do go ahead we've got to keep playing, something we've got to learn or we make it difficult for ourselves, as we saw in the 2nd half. It was 45 minutes of misery for the bench because we stopped playing.
"Its always a killer (to concede just before halftime). An unnecessary free-kick, sloppy, slow to react to the 2nd ball, its obviously a psychological thing that we've got to work on. The Lao lads came out on a high and full credit to them. I thought they played very well, particularly in the 2nd half with 10 men. They made it very difficult for us. We didn't keep possession of the ball, we didn't keep things simple, we tried to run with the ball, we must keep it simple, move the ball, move yourself, create options for the player with the ball, we stopped doing that in the 2nd half and we got punished. We've got to learn from it.
"With 4 games in 6 days I'll give some of the boys who haven't played some exposure and an opportunity, as they've worked hard in Vietnam, to play in front of the home supporters and I'll expect them to go out to win the game as well (against Vissai Ninh Binh on Thursday). I expect high standards from everyone in the squad. I want competition for places, there's 25 players in the squad and I'll expect the players who take the field on Thursday to give 100% and try to force their way into the starting XI for the final. Positions are up for grabs, particularly after our 2nd half performance."

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