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China PR U23 v Laos U23

Hiddink praises China's physical improvements following win over Laos

15:39 GMT+3 22/03/2019
Guus Hiddink, Chelsea, Premier League, 20160301
China handed Laos a 5-0 thrashing in their first AFC U-23 Championship qualifiers match on Friday.

BY        ZULHILMI ZAINAL       Follow on Twitter

After seeing his charges cruise to a 5-0 win over Laos in their Group J 2020 AFC U-23 Championship qualification match on Friday, China head coach Guus Hiddink credited improvements to their physique for his charges' performance.

"I'm very happy with the result as it was a game played under difficult circumstances; the hot weather was harsh while the pitch was a bit bumpy. In the first half we started with a good press, and I could feel that it was a matter of time before we would get the first goal. And we did get three goals in the first half. 

"We've been practicing for the whole of the past month and improved a lot physically, as well as tactically and strategically. They were also able to execute what we have been training; playing a pressing game and an attractive attacking brand of football," said the former Chelsea, Netherlands and Russia manager.

He was also impressed with the way his boys have improved physically.

"Players need to be fit and athletic in modern football, while we have been working together for many, many weeks on the physical part. And the players have improved a lot physically.

"When we started in October, their physical state was very bad. And now we can see from the data that we collected that they are now doing four times better than previously. As a consequence, we can play high-paced football, which is an advantage over teams who don't have this," explained the Dutch manager.

China will next play the Philippines, on Sunday.

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