Head coach Felix Sanchez praised the performance of the younger players after Qatar cruised to a 5-0 win over Bangladesh in Group E of the Asian Qualifiers on Friday.
The 2022 FIFA World Cup hosts sealed the three points thanks to a brace each from 2019 AFC Player of the Year Akram Afif and 2019 AFC Asian Cup top scorer Almoez Ali, after Abdulaziz Hatem had scored the opener.
“I’m happy with the return of official matches along with the big win and the performance of the young players,” said Sanchez. “They had a good match physically and mentally. All I wanted today from the players was to give their best and have a good performance. However, we could have scored more than five goals.”
The 44-year-old Spaniard said he was happy that the young players performed well and showed great concentration. “The players had high concentration in the training sessions and the match,” he said.
“This will give them a lot of confidence for the future. We controlled the match right from the beginning until the final whistle. We had good concentration in our attacking build-up, thanks to the defensive style of our opponents.”
Bangladesh head coach Jamie Day said his side performed well despite the big defeat. “I’m proud with the performance of the players, despite conceding many goals,” he said.
“I’m happy with what we showed despite the defeat as we didn’t play any official matches for eight months.”
“We were expecting to concede more goals because of the difference in experience between the two teams. We learnt a lesson from this defeat but despite this heavy result, there were some positives for us as we gave the chance to some youngsters in our team. Qatar have been together for a long time and they’re a strong team. It’s hard to attack when you compete with the Asian champions. You can’t compare Qatar and Bangladesh. Qatar are ranked in the fifties and we’re 184,” added Day.
The win means Qatar are now well-placed to finish on top of Group E of the Asian Qualifiers, which serve as the qualification path for both the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023. As FIFA World Cup hosts, Qatar are automatic qualifiers for the global showpiece, but they will confirm their place at China 2023 as group winners, or as one of the four highest-ranked runners-up.
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