Lions ready for Jordan
Singapore looks to get back on the road towards AFC Asian Cup 2011 finals in Qatar when they host Jordan at the National Stadium on Wednesday evening.
Looking to put away the memories of their disastrous opening group E lose to Iran, the Lions looked confident in training this past week.
“There is a good atmosphere in the team at the moment. The players are determined to put the Iran match behind them,” said Singapore coach Radojko Avramovic.
“We are going to go out there and play good football that we are capable off and get the points. We really need the points and it will fulfill our ambitions in this competition,” added Avramovic.
But getting those points will not be easy as they will face a competitive Jordanian side that already has a point from their opening game against Thailand in Amman.
Jordan coach, Martinho Vingada, sees the game against the Lions as a must win game to keep pace with leaders Iran.
“This is our second game in the group and as Iran in the strongest team in the group. It is a three way fight amongst the other three teams for the last qualifying berth and the group is still open but it is also important to win and get the three points,” coach Vingada said.
“My team is determined and it is a great step forward if we can achieve our target.
“There are no easy games in this group we expect a good, physical game with the Singapore team and we want to play well for the spectators,” he added.
With Thailand taking on group favorites Iran at the Rajamangala Stadium in Bangkok on the same day, the Lions full well know that a result against Jordan is necessary to keep pace with leaders Iran.
Aleksandar Duric might make a surprise return to the team after suffering a hairline fracture in the opening game of the recently concluded Suzuki Cup.
Duric, the reigning S.League player of the year, trained with the Lions the past week and his goal scoring expertise will certainly help the Lions cause.
Also in the mix of things is the mercurial forward Khairul Amri, who last saw action in last November’s Singapore Cup 3rd/4th match where he broke his metatarsal.
The timely returns of Amri and Duric bodes well as Singapore again suffered a setback in the striking department when captain Indra Sahdan twisted his ankle and looks doubtful for the match.
Both Amri and Duric looked sharp in training throughout the week, especially Amri who looks raring to have a go at the Jordanians
Timing is everything for a good team to transcend to a great team and the Lions look finally ready to grab their long awaited chance on Wednesday evening.
Singapore probable lineup: Lionel Lewis (GK), Mohd Noh Rahman, Baihakki Khaizan, Daniel Bennett, Shaiful Esah, Shahril Ishak, Fahrudin Mustafic, John Wilkinson, Ridhuan Muhammud, Noh Alam Shah, Agu Casmir
Substitutes: Hassan Sunny (GK), Shaiful Esah, Juma’at Jantan, Rosman Sulaiman, Mustaqim Mansur, Shi Jiayi, Isa Halim, Indra Sahdan, Hyrulnizam Juma’at, Aleksandar Duric, Khairul Amri