The Sri Lanka under-23 soccer coach Mohideen Mohamed Amanulla is pretty confident that his boys are capable of giving a commendable performance when they take on Syria in the curtain raiser fixture of the AFCU23 Asian Cup Uzbekistan 2022 qualifiers at the National Stadium Qatar today.
“I am pretty confident that the boys will put up a fine performance in this tournament. Even though we started late and within a period of one month they have shaped up well which is a commendable achievement.”Said Amanulla.
Due to the pandemic and the country was under lockdown status, this squad was able to make a delayed start under severe health restrictions. But after some intensive training along with strategic planning executed by coach Amanulla, were able to convert this team to reach this level where they are now in a position to handle any opponent under pressure situation.
According to him the squad is a blend of youth and experience. He is also blessed with six experienced players who have donned the National jersey Asela Madushan, Sasanka Dilhara Jayasekera, Nuwan Gimhana, Mohamed Aman Rifkhan Mohamed and Shabeer Razooniya, which no doubt will be an added advantage for them. Out of them Nuwan Gimhana who stood as the number two with the National side will play the key role as their main goal keeper. The other notable factor is this squad is also imbibed with 12 players who represented the under-19 team a few years back. Moreover, Amanulla has many options to choose his final side for today’s game which is going to be a herculean task against one of the top rated teams in the competition.
Amanulla, has drawn up a plan to continue with this squad till 2023 by when he believes they can transform this outfit to a formidable team. “My intention is to continue with this squad until 2023 until such time most of these players are eligible to play. If we can concentrate accordingly, then we are definitely to produce a champion side enabling us to scout and feed the players for the National team.”
“The incumbent football administration under Jaswar Umar has shown their keenness to continue with this squad until 2023 which is a very positive sign for the game.” Amanulla further added.
The Football Governing body also has recruited Marcus Ferreria as their trainer commencing from this assignment which is a wise move by them . The Brazilian Marcus has vast experience in the game, where he was occupied in the same capacity way back in 1990’s and served in Saudi Arabia nearly a decade before he assumed duty here. “I am thankful to the Football federation for contracting Marcus for us.
He is a vastly experienced person of the game. He is geared up with new training methods especially regarding player’s fitness. Within a short period, we are unable to make amends but we managed to work in various areas to boost the players physiology.” Concluded Amanulla.