Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Breathing confidence

Coach Prak Sokmony is interviewed before the match
More photos from this afternoon's 5-1 Cambodian U-22s success over the visiting Philippines U-22s, which has breathed confidence into the team and the Cambodian fans judging by comments on Facebook, though that really needs to be tempered by the quality of the opposition, who were beaten 9-1 by Thailand a few days ago. Still it's a positive step forward for the Cambodian youngsters, after the last twenty months or so of utter mediocrity and worse under the South Korean coach. Responsibility for the U-22s was given instead to Prak Sokmony and he's been working with his squad, playing matches against a few C-League teams (versus Naga won 3-2, Nat Police drew 1-1, Boeung Ket drew 2-2, BBU drew 1-1) and then a stint in Vietnam (where they drew 0-0 v Saigon FC) before today's game. All leading towards the AFC U-22 Asian Cup that will kick-off in Laos in ten days time. The Cambodian U-22s fixtures are as follows and their toughest matches look to be against Thailand, China and Korea:
  • Sat 23 June: Hong Kong v Cambodia
  • Mon 25 June: Thailand v Cambodia
  • Thu 28 June: Cambodia v China PR
  • Sat 30 June: Cambodia v Korea DPR
  • Tue 3 July: Laos v Cambodia
The spokesman for the Cambodian federation had this to say about the upcoming qualifying competition for the 2013 finals. "The U22 Asian Cup is a brand new AFC concept. It is crucial that we perform well in Laos. This age group represents the nucleus for our future competitions like the AFF Suzuki Cup and beyond." Though a successful tournament would be great for Cambodian football after such a spell in the doldrums, the opposition will be tough and even Hong Kong and Laos will be considerably better opposition than the Philippines. The Suzuki Cup - which will be played in October - is at senior international level so the federation spokesman seems to be disregarding many of the over-22 players who would literally walk into a senior team squad ahead of many of this U-22 squad.
Captain Keo Sokngorn leads out the Cambodia team

The players enter the pitch before the game

The Cambodian team sing their national anthem

The substitutes stand for the national anthem

The Philippines U-22 starting XI

The captains exchange handshakes

In the middle is Sos Suhana (13), scorer of the first two goals flanked by Soun Veasna and Chea Samnang


Anonymous said...

Who are the officials?

Andy Brouwer said...

The FFC Technical Director and spokesman, as quotes in

Anonymous said...

I meant the referees for this match (in the US we call match referees "official.")

Andy Brouwer said...

The match officials for the match were all from Cambodia. The referee was the so-called 'best ref in the country'. Not my opinion - at all.