Bangladesh national team head coach Andrew Ord kept his faith on Under-23 national team despite suffering a huge 0-3 defeat against Qatar Olympic football team in Doha on Thursday.
The Anglo-Australian coach believed that his charges learned a lot from the two warm-up matches against Nepal Under-23 team and Qatar side that would help them perform well in the forthcoming AFC Under-23 Championship qualifiers.
The qualifiers are scheduled to be held in Palestine from July 19 to 23.
The men in Red and Green had to play two practice matches within 48-hour after travelling from Nepal to Qatar and lost both.
Ord claimed the frantic schedule made his players fatigued, which affected their performances against Qatar.
‘We had to make lots of changes as playing a game 48 hours earlier and having a flight meant we had to rotate the squad a lot,’ a Bangladesh Football Federation press release quoted the coach as saying on Friday.
Even though Bangladesh conceded two goals in the first half, the 38-year old coach claimed his side played better in the first-half and offered the home side little room.
‘We did play [ with] counter attack and limited Qatar to very few chances in the first half as well as breaking away dangerously sometimes by ourselves,’ said the coach.
‘However, you have to remember that Qatar have some excellent players. They have all the resources money can buy and were very well prepared.
‘They have played in a very competitive tournament before this game and when we lost concentration or got tired they punished our mistakes.’
Ord admitted that Bangladesh lost their rhythm in the last part of the game which helped Qatar to score their third goal.
‘In the second half, we actually for 20 minutes pushed them back and trapped Qatar in their own half but they produced a move or real class and quality to score the third goal and that is what separates us from countries of this level at the moment,’ he said.
Ord said those two practice matches helped him judge his own resources which would help him prepare the team for the qualifiers.
‘The two games have been vital,’ Ord said, adding that, ‘without them we would have had no chance in Palestine.
‘I’m sure we will improve from these games and it’s the only way to test you against higher level opponents.
‘Bangladesh have never won a game at this U-23 tournament level, so our goal is to create history and bring a victory back from the championships,’ he said.
Bangladesh will stay in Qatar for one more day before leaving for Palestine on July 16, three days before their first match of Group E against Jordan.
Bangladesh will face Tajikistan and hosts Palestine respectively on July 21 and 23.
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