Despite riding high on the come from behind 3-2 victory against Vietnam, Iraq coach Srecko Katanec is not willing to take Yemen lightly in their AFC Asian Cup group D encounter later today.
Iraq were pushed to their limits by a more than game Vietnam and won thanks only to a sublime freekick in the final minutes of the game in their group D opener.
And head coach Katanec is expecting a similar sort of test when his team faces Yemen in their second match.
“We know the quality of the Yemen team and they will fight just like how Vietnam did. From the beginning for sure they will be looking to score. I spoke to the players and told them to be very careful. Normally we are the better team on paper, but football is strange and we will see how we fare against Yemen.
“Each game is different and I hope we can play like we did in the second half against Vietnam,” he cautioned.
However, the 55 year old Slovenian is also aware of the effect the resurgent 3-2 victory his team recorded against Vietnam has on proceedings, and hopes that it can spur them onto another victory against Yemen.
“Our team is well rested and focused to take on our next opponents.
“Playing Vietnam was very difficult, but fortunately we came back twice. It’s a very good quality for a team to come back and win the game,” he concluded.