Thailand head coach Kiatisuk Senamuang heaped praise on his side following their 2-0 win over Myanmar in the first leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup semi-final on Sunday.
A brace from striker Teerasil Dangda saw the reigning champions put one foot in the final and inch one step closer to their goal of retaining their title.
Kiatisuk also used the opportunity to dedicate Thailand’s win to King Bhumibol Adulyadej, who passed away at the age of 88 in October, and Maha Vajiralongkorn, who took his father’s place as the country’s new King.
“Our target has always been to qualify for the final and win the championship,” he said. “Today’s win is dedicated to our late King whose birthday is tomorrow, and also for our newly crowned King.”
Having emerged victorious in hostile territory, the War Elephants now hold a comfortable 2-0 advantage going into the second leg on home soil on Thursday.
However, Kiatisuk believes that since Myanmar have their back against the wall, they will be a lot more dangerous in the second leg as the co-hosts will be looking to do everything in their power to pull off, what would be, an astounding come-from-behind win.
“We wanted to be ahead after this game,” the 43-year-old said. “We had our chances and scored but still it’s not finished yet. Maybe they (Myanmar) were under pressure but I believe they could be better in the next game.”