Preview MD2 - Group D: UAE vs DPR Korea
Buriram: UAE head coach Maciej Skorza is confident his side has more to give when they take on DPR Korea in their second AFC U23 Championship Thailand 2020 Group D encounter at the Buriram Stadium on Monday.
The Whites held 2018 runners-up Vietnam to a goalless draw in their campaign opener, and victory against DPR Korea would put them well on track to reach the quarter-finals ahead of an anticipated all West Asia clash with Jordan on the final matchday of the group stage.
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“The boys did well in the first game against Vietnam. We fought hard and played with intensity against an organised and quick side,” said Skorza.
“We have closed that first chapter now. I have faith in my players and I am confident that they have a lot more to give against DPR Korea. This is a game which we go into with winning as our sole objective."
The challenge ahead for Skorza’s side is a DPR Korea team that know they cannot afford another defeat, having fallen to a 2-1 loss at the hands of Jordan on Matchday One, with Ryang Hyon-ju late strike in the second half proving merely a consolation.
On Friday, the UAE huffed and puffed with Ali Saleh impressing with his quick bursts of pace down the left, but despite several efforts throughout the 90 minutes, they could not find a way past the Vietnamese goalkeeper.
“This is one area we particularly need to improve on. We created chances, but were unable to take them, so we need to be sharper in front of goal if we are to get a result in this important match to qualify to the next stage."
Having lost his first game in Thailand 2020, DPR Korea’s Ri Yu-il is looking inward as well as studying his opponents to improve his side ahead of the UAE clash.
“We have analysed both the UAE and Vietnam, but we have also learned a lot of lessons through our mistakes in the first game, so we can be better prepared for the next two matches,” said Ri.
“Even though we gave our best against Jordan, we did commit some mistakes, especially in defence. It was our first game and many of the players were not fully prepared mentally. So, we believe we can do better against the UAE.”
UAE vs DPR Korea
Venue: Buriram Stadium (Buriram)
Kick-off: 17:15 (UTC +7)
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