Myanmar coach Michael Feichtenbeiner urges his side to ‘believe in yourself’ against very strong India
The German head coach will take charge of his first game as the head coach.
Myanmar will face India in the inaugural game of the 2023 Tri-Nation Friendly tournament on the 22nd of March. This is the first time the White Angels will be playing under their new manager Michael Feichtenbeiner, after his appointment at the start of this month.
Myanmar will be expecting a decent start to their Tri-Nations campaign against India on Wednesday, and will look to grab all three points against the hosts.
Ahead of what is set to be a very important game for Michael Feichtenbeiner and his men, the German head coach spoke to the media. These are the excerpts from the conversation.
Myanmar’s preparations ahead of his first game in-charge
As a big challenge awaits Michael in his first official game as the head coach of the Myanmar national team, there is a mixed feeling of excitement as well as nervousness, as the hopes and aspirations of a nation are on the shoulders of the 62-year-old. When asked about his preparations and thoughts ahead of the game, this is what Michael had to say.
“As you said for me it’s the first official match of the national team. I took over the team with my coaching staff on the first of March, so we started a few days training in Myanmar and yesterday we arrived in Imphal. We had one session and 30 minutes ago our players playing in Thailand and Malaysia, they also join us for the match.
“After the press conference, we have another training session and this will be my first session with the whole team. It’s not the best, ideal preparation for a match against India tomorrow, but anyway I am happy to have the opportunity to see my new boys in a tough game against India.”
Do you think you can beat India?
India are a far better team than Myanmar in terms of FIFA rankings, and the Blue tigers also have a home advantage on Wednesday. When asked if these factors might restrict his team, Michael nodded in disagreement.
“Look it is very simple, I believe in my new boys, and we have to build a new relationship. I am Experienced in football, I work as a head coach for more than 30 years. So you can always win, if you believe in yourself but maybe if India is very strong, maybe we have no chance, but we try our best.
“Of course for us it is important, as a new coach with these players, for us it’s the first time, the first step for our future, we look for our performance. If we have a good performance tomorrow night, guess we will make it difficult for India,” Michael said.
Can climate conditions impact Myanmar’s performance in the Tri-Nation tournament?
The climatic conditions are highly contradictory in Imphal as compared to what the players are used to in their home country. This might be a big problem for Myanmar, as the players might require some time to adapt to the high altitude and climatic conditions.
“As I mention before, our preparation for the game tomorrow night are not ideal. If you want an ideal situation, you have to stay here in Imphal for maybe 4-5 days, to adapt in the field, in the weather, in everything. But tonight is the first time I get all my players together. At the Moment I don’t know them by name. It is totally new, so we are more focused on ourselves and our performance rather than the weather conditions, the Indian team.” Michael said
“We respect India and it is a great challenge for us but at this moment Myanmar football, we focus on ourselves, and we focus on our performance. In the short time I took over the team and in my preparation for my new team I saw many talents in Myanmar football, so I am confident we can go and do a good performance tomorrow,” he added.
“To prepare for the match, I watched many matches from the Indian team to prepare my team. But after today, I decided since its the first time with my new players, I focus only on the Myanmar football team. I saw many good players in the Indian team, I also saw some weaknesses, some good strengths, but I decided we will focus on ourselves. So if we play well, I tell you the Myanmar boys are not bad, we have a good strong team and will focus on our performance,” he concluded.
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Can we see a closely contested game?
India and Myanmar share a long history on the pitch, and this might give Michael and his men some extra incentive to give it their all tomorrow, and register a history win.
“I have also watched some matches of Myanmar against India from the past. Maybe in the last few years, Myanmar struggled a bit in terms of returns against India and other teams as well. But in the past Myanmar also build a very strong national team so that’s my challenge, to build again a very strong Myanmar team for the future.
“I feel there is a lot of potential in Myanmar football and this we have to show against a very strong Indian team tomorrow. I think for India I am not sure but maybe this the first time they play in Imphal so they want to show something special here in this region and we expect a very strong team (opponent),” the Myanmar head coach said.
Some qualities of Myanmar players
When asked to highlight some qualities of his men, Michael said this:
“Myanmar players are in offense they have some very skillful players. Many of our national team players play abroad, in Thailand and Malaysia for the moment, so they can show their quality. Technique wise we have some very good players.”
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