Hosts Myanmar will try to close in on an AFC Challenge Cup 2014 berth, as they face their next opponents Chinese Taipei, in an important group A clash..
Shan-Fu, Yi Wei, Cheng Yi, Meng Chian;
Hung Hsu, Hsing, Yuan, Yin Hung, Kai Chun;
He Ming Chan
The White Angels have had the perfect start to their 2014 Challenge Cup qualifying campaign, as they hammered five goals past a hapless Guam side. In their second match, Myanmar will have to face a higher quality of opposition in the form of Chinese Taipei and cannot afford to take them lightly, although they will still be the favourites.
Chinese Taipei played well in their first match, as they were on course to grabbing a point against a much more fancied Indian side, but Robin Singh's goal in the dying minutes of the game secured all three points for the Blue Tigers. That puts Chinese Taipei in a do or die scenario against Myanmar, as they cannot afford another defeat.
The hosts on the other hand will be brimming with confidence, after they annihilated a poor Guam side and will look to continue where they left off. Kayaw Zayar's 25 yard strike, that caught the Guam keeper off guard summed up Myanmar's immaculate performance.
Three points will be vital for Myanma,r as it may eventually come down to the 'big two' of this group, when the White Angels square-off against India on 6th March. They may well employ two strikers up front yet again, as the hosts will look to go all out against a modest opposition.
Chinese Taipei will attempt to sit back, soak in the pressure and then hit their more dominant opponents on the counter and that may prove to be the best ploy against a team that likes to control the game from the start. Myanmar on the other hand, will be eager to grab an early goal to get the ball rolling, and then look to run riot and secure an emphatic win, like they did in their last game.
All in all, an important contest that could have a big say in deciding the final outcome of this group. Chinese Taipei will do their best against the highest ranked team in the group, and will try to nick a point off them, while hoping for a freak result in the other match between Guam and India. But then again, not many would bet against this Myanmar side, and we may have another rout on the cards.
|DID YOU KNOW?
- Chinese Taipei secured third place in the 1960 Asian Cup, and finished fourth eight years later.
- Myanmar have qualified only once for the Asian Cup a,nd had finished as runners-up in 1968.
- The White Angels played their first World Cup qualifiers against China in 2007, losing 0-7 and 0-4.
- Chinese Taipei has been affiliated with FIFA under three different names starting with Taiwan then Republic of China and now Chinese Taipei.
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