Minnows Laos returned to the AFF Championship finals, after missing out on the previous edition. They have been drawin in Group A.
Laos have always been considered as the minnows in AFF Championship history. For this tournament, this reputation is unlikely to change. Despite having shown some improvements and undergone a training camp in Spain, Laos are not expected to advance to the semi-finals.
Laos. Photo from AFF Media
Goalkeepers : Saymanolinh Paseuth, Keo Souvannasangsgo, Outthilath Nammakhot.
Defenders : Thotnilath Sibounhuang, Lathasay Lounlasy, Sonevilay Sihavong, Xayasith Singsavang, Thinnakone Vongsa, Mek Insoumang, Khounsombath Phommxay.
Midfielders: Phouthone Innalay, Tiny Bounmalay, Phithack Kongmathilath, Soukaphone Vongchiengkham, Chanthaphone Waenvongsoth, Bounphachan Bounkong, Phatthana Phommathep, Kaharn Phetsivilay, Chansamone Phommalivong.
Forwards : Somxay Keohanam, Thatsaphone Saysouk, Soukchinda Natphasouk.
HEAD COACH PROFILE
Varadaraju Sundramoorthy was appointed as Laos head coach on 15 October. It was a suprise appointment as just a month earlier, French coach Patrice Neveu was still on charge of Thim Xad, in preparation of the AFF Championship. Sundramoorthy has coached since 1999 but has not gained any major titles. In 2016 he had been appointed as Singapore head coach but under his guidance, the four-time AFF champions failed to recreate their past glories. This then led to his departure as the Lions boss on 9 April 2018.
Sundramoorthy. Photo from Getty
In the run-up to this edition, Laos have become a little secretive, and very little information on them has been unearthed. In the latest friendly match, they played with a 4-4-2 formation, focusing on more defensive tatics. Soukaphone Vongchiengkham, who plays for Thai club Sisaket, is their most important player in this campaign.
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Malaysia starlet Akhyar Rashid has been spending sometime in the swimming pool, but no, he wasn't lazing about. Find out what he was up to. Bintang muda Malaysia, Akhyar Rashid ada meluangkan masa di kolam renang baru-baru ini. Tapi jangan salah sangka; bukannya dia bermalas-malasan. Ketahui apa tujuannya. #affsuzukicup2018