Malaysia will travel to Hanoi to face Vietnam in a high-voltage group stage clash of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 at the My Dinh National Stadium on Friday with the hosts touted as the favourites to emerge victorious from the encounter.
However, Malaysia captain Zaquan Adha Radzak believes his team has what it takes to defeat Vietnam on the day and even go on and win the AFF Suzuki Cup for a second time — after their maiden title triumph in 2010.
“There’s only one key and that’s whatever way Vietnam play doesn’t matter because our coach told us that if we play together as a team we can beat any other nation,” Zaquan told AFFSuzukiCup.com.
“Whatever tactical approach Vietnam will bring we know we can win if we stay focused and play together as a team,” he said.
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After making a good start to the tournament, he now expects a tough challenge from the Golden Dragons though. “If we look at the first two matches, we have six points and of course we know that the match with Vietnam is not easy because they’re a good team but we must play our game.”
“We are away from home so we must focus and give 100% and if we that then I’m hopeful we can get a positive result – either a draw or a win – and that would be a good result for us in terms of moving towards the second round.”
Malaysia are not one of the favourites to win the tournament this year, but many believe they have an outside chance if the overwhelming favourites miss out. But the 31-year-old says what matters is how the teams perform on the pitch.
“Of course, I’ve heard people saying that only Thailand and Vietnam are the teams that can be champion but in football anything can happen,” said the Kuala Lumpur FA star.
“If you look at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, many people expected Brazil to be the champions and that didn’t happen. So people can have their opinions but like I said in football anything can happen and if we play together then nothing is impossible and Malaysia can be the champion again at the AFF Suzuki Cup.”
(Photo credit: AFF Suzuki Cup)