Bangladesh national football team will look to put up another spirited show when they square off against Oman in their fourth match of the World Cup qualifiers at the Sultan Qaboos Sports Complex in Muscat today.
Satellite channel Bangla TV will telecast the match live from 9:00pm Bangladesh time.
Bangladesh, the lowest-ranked side in Group E and sitting at the bottom with two defeats and a draw, showed character in the last two matches against Asian champions Qatar and neighbours India despite only managing a single point from those two games.
They would like to carry the momentum against a team 100 places above them Oman in FIFA ranking and it will be the first FIFA/AFC-sanctioned official match between the two sides even though they met in the Quaid-E-Azam International tournament in Pakistan in 1982, with Oman winning that encounter 3-1.
“I think in the previous two games, we have played really well and the performance of the players has been fantastic. This will be our toughest match so far as this is a very good side and we are away from home,” Bangladesh coach Jamie Day said on the eve of the match.
“It’s all extremely tough for our players to keep performing against teams that are technically better than us like they have done so far, but I want to try and reach the levels we have done recently,” Day added. The English coach might have some worries regarding fatigue to some of the players and he was not entirely happy despite a 3-1 win over Muscat Club in the practice match, which he termed ‘a sloppy performance’.
The 40-year-old coach is, however, determined to keep the same approach from the two previous games.
“As we have done in every game, [I want the] willingness to work hard, be organised and play with a good tempo,” Day said. “All we can do is keep creating chances and work on finishing in training.”
Oman play pressing football with the wingers whipping in crosses relentlessly. They are also good in set-pieces and very quick on the break. When asked whether Bangladesh can stop Oman’s forwards, Day said: “It is going to be a tough task but we have prepared well and will try to get the plan right for the match.”
“It will be fantastic if we can get a good level of fans in the stadium; that will definitely encourage the players,” hoped the English coach, who is likely to start with the same eleven players who started against India last month.
Oman coach Erwin Koeman was confident of closing the gap with leaders Qatar by notching up a victory against Bangladesh following their 2-1 defeat against the Asian champions.
“We will play against Bangladesh tomorrow but it is all about us. We will make the game because we will have a lot of box sessions and try to get the space [behind the backline] and avail the chances. It is an interesting game, but we know how to play,” said Koeman, who alongside his younger brother Ronald Koeman, won the 1988 European Championship for Netherlands.