Afghanistan coach Anoush Dastgir – We are on the same level as India

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Zulhilmi Zainal
Afghanistan coach was all praise for the Asian champions who dismantled his side 6-0 on Thursday...

Afghanistan suffered a 6-0 hammering at the hands of Asian Cup champions Qatar in the opening round of the qualifying campaign for 2022 World Cup and the 2023 Asian Cup.

Almoez Ali was the star of the evening with an emphatic hat-trick with debutant Yusuf Abdurisag also impressing on the wings. This was Qatar’s first home game since the Asian Cup triumph and coach Felix Sanchez’s men put on a show for the assembled fans at the Al Sadd Stadium.

“We know how good Qatar is. We are not comparing ourselves on any paradigm to Qatar. I think the first 15 minutes was very tough. If we had survived the first 15 minutes then the scoreline would not have been 6-0. Qatar played the same intensity they played in the AFC Asian Cup. There was no change in style. They are a quality side. During the second and third goal, it showed the quality they have.

“We had some chances in the counter, but we did not take them. If we played 50 times against Qatar, we would not draw even once. So let's be realistic and be honest,” said coach Anoush Dastgir.

“Some coaches go and sit down after you concede three or four goals. But you have to be with them for the entire 90 minutes. The guys are fighting on the pitch and you have to show that you are with them. We knew we had to defend for 90 minutes,” he added.

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The Afghanistan coach hopes that his side can pick full points in their next game against Bangladesh. He also mentioned that Afghanistan is more or less on the same level as India.

“We are now going for the game against Bangladesh. We have to improve with what we have.  To be honest our level is better than Bangladesh. We have to win that match. And against India, it will be a nice game as I think we are at the same level.”

 

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