Maradona eyes more changes

Maradona eyes more changes

Diego Maradona has hinted he could be about to shake up the structure of his Al Wasl side in order to secure his first three-point haul in charge.

The Zabeel Stadium outfit slumped to a 4-3 defeat at champions Al Jazira in the opening round of the Etisalat Cup, Group A last week, with a porous defence raising some clear, early-season concerns.

However, the 50-year-old Argentine great is keen to rectify those failings at the back with a different tack in Thursday’s afternoon’s home clash with Emirates at Al Ahli’s Rashid Stadium.

“There is going to be a new strategy, with new tactics, and a new formation may possibly be deployed against Emirates,” he admitted.

“I’ll also try to incorporate some fresh faces into the squad.

“We’re concerned about the defence and working very hard to improve the defensive skills that we’re seeing every day.

“With the Al Jazira game, it was 3-3 until the final goal in second-half stoppage time.

“But, of course, we’re working hard with the squad every day and looking to improve certain parts of the first team that we believe need to be.”

Chilean international midfielder Edson Puch is expected to be only on the substitutes’ bench as he continues his recovery from a calf muscle injury.

Oman defender Mohammed Al-Shiba won’t have any involvement at all though after Maradona informed him that he has no part in his future plans.

This development in terms of the dynamic of the Al Wasl squad means that the coach can prospectively bring in another overseas recruit with the Asian/fourth foreigner squad slot now theoretically vacant.

A new signing or two may help allay some premature nerves, especially among the fans, but Maradona has moved to reassure those anxious supporters in the stands that there is no need to panic just now. “If you are scared, then don’t come to watch the matches,” he added.

“You can stay at home and watch a comedy series or a DVD.

“With football, there’s nothing to be scared about and it’s all about entertainment.

“It’s about passion and, if you like it and you want to be entertained, watch us. If not, then don’t.

“I like to win, I’m here to do so and I’m giving it my all in order to achieve better results. I’ll do my best and the Al Wasl faithful shouldn’t be worried about anything. Hopefully, I’ll be able to achieve great things at this football club.”

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