Oman eye early goals in must-win match against Turkmenistan
The Oman team will have to go all out for a win against Turkmenistan.
Abu Dhabi - Oman haven't enjoyed the rub of the green so far with few referee decisions going against them
By Ashwani Kumar
Published: Wed 16 Jan 2019, 6:05 PM
Last updated: Wed 16 Jan 2019, 8:33 PM
Oman played well so far in the AFC Asian Cup 2019 but lost their close encounters to Group F Round 16 qualifiers Uzbekistan and Japan. 'The Reds' in their bid to qualify into the knockout stage as the third-best ranked team need to defeat Turkmenistan in the final group match.
Oman coach Pim Verbeek said the tournament has proved there are neither big or small teams nor any easy matches.
"We have to win. We know one goal difference might be enough. We will do everything to score as many as possible. We have 90 minutes but it will be better to score early. All the players are ready. We have no red cards or injuries. We have to make all efforts to make it a good game. We cannot commit mistakes. We have to keep clean sheets," the well-travelled Dutchman said ahead of the must-win match.
But Omanis haven't enjoyed the rub of the green so far with few referee decisions going against them.
"I think about my players not the referees. Sometimes you are lucky with the decisions and sometimes you are not. So far we have been unlucky. We are looking forward to the match and hope we will be lucky. You need a bit of luck too to be successful," he noted.
The coach expects Turkmenistan to be a tough side.
"Turkmenistan competed well against Uzbekistan and they will come hard at us. They were unlucky in the first half as Uzbekistan scored four goals. We have a plan and strategy but everyone will have to wait till 5.30 pm to see that," the coach added.
Keeper Faiz Al Rushaidi said everyone was united in their efforts to win.
"We will do our best and follow coach's instructions. This is a must-win match for us. We will do everything possible to win and not concede."
Oman play Turkmenistan at Mohammed bin Zayed Stadium (5.30 pm) on Thursday.
WHERE THEY STAND
Country P W D L F A P
Uzbekistan 2 2 0 0 6 1 6
Japan 2 2 0 0 4 2 6
Oman 2 0 0 2 1 3 0
Turkmenistan 2 0 0 2 2 7 0