Friday, November 13, 2009

Press Talk

Match report for Cambodia v Laos
This is my match report from Tuesday's match and Cambodia's win over Laos, that appeared in yesterday's Phnom Penh Post. The match report from last night will appear on Monday, as will the report from Saturday's final. Confused? So am I. It's all about newspaper deadlines. The story is already online here.
I didn't pick a MOTM from last night's Cambodia game as to be honest not one player stood out as having a better game than anyone else. It was that sort of match for the home team. They never really got hold of the ball for more than a few minutes as Vissai NB kept it for long periods and when they did attack, over-eagerness and poor control gave possession away far too easily. It looked like the introduction of Chan Chhaya, Kuoch Sokumpheak and Nov Soseila in the closing minutes might make a difference but it didn't happen. I'm sure Scott will reintroduce all the players that sat on the bench last night for tomorrow's final against HAGL, who will be a different proposition from the team that caved-in on Sunday after leading 2-nil. It all adds up to a spicy encounter. Make sure you tell your friends and they tell their friends to get along to the Olympic Stadium tomorrow. And if you can't make it, watch the game live on the local TV5 channel. Tonight at the Tata restaurant over the Japanese Bridge, is the BIDC Cup's official dinner and I've been invited. At last I seem to made it onto the list of people to be invited to events, usually they forget to invite me. Tomorrow's match will no doubt attract a flood of VIPs, but the FFC have listened to our moans from a couple of months ago and designated a media area in the main stand, so a pat on the back to them for that. They've also upped their game in providing match information and we've been showered with a free bottle of cold water at each game. At this rate we'll have an internet connection in no time. Fat chance. They've even asked the media to select the competition's most valuable player and the best goalkeeper, who'll each get $1,000. It's nice to be asked.
At the post-match press conference last night, Cambodia's coach Scott O'Donell had this to say; "I wasn't happy with our first-half performance, we didn't play well and all credit to Ninh Binh they gave us a footballing lesson in how to keep possession. We played better in the second-half but still didn't have enough of a goal threat. Aside from one training session, this was the first time that team have played together and I cannot fault their effort or commitment. I was glad to be able to give all the players in the squad a run-out. I will sit down with my coaches tomorrow and select the team for Saturday. Everyone will be fit for the final except Chhun Sothearath, who has a knee injury. The supporters were great again and I think they understood what we were trying to do tonight in giving all the players the opportunity to play in front of their home fans. I hope they will turn out in their droves for the final on Saturday."

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