Palestine are looking forward to confirming the final berth of the Bangabandhu Gold Cup as the defending champions take on Seychelles in the first semifinal at the Bangabandhu National Stadium today. The match will get underway at 5:00pm.
Palestine, the top-ranked side in the six-nation tournament, stormed into the last four with wins over Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. The side from the Middle East had four days’ rest before their fixture against Seychelles, who scraped into the last four due to better goal-difference after playing a 2-2 draw against Mauritius following a 3-1 defeat against group champions Burundi.
Despite being confident about keeping the winning streak intact, Palestine are focused on their own performance rather than thinking much of the opponents.
“Sometimes long rest leads to both positives and negatives, but we are focusing on positive things as we have come here to win the trophy. We watch their [Seychelles] two group matches, but we are focusing only on our team because we have confidence in our players,” Palestine coach Makram Daboub said at a pre-match conference at the BFF house yesterday.
Makram’s counterpart Ralph Jean Louis was worried about the players’ fatigue as they got only one day’s rest before the semifinal.
“The players got tired in the late stages of the last game [on Monday]. We have to minimise the fatigue of the players,” Louis said. “Palestine are very good technically and tactically and we are wary of them. Hopefully it will be a competitive game.”