Key striker Adisak Kraisorn believes Thailand will prove their superiority over Malaysia in the second leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup semi-finals at the Rajamangala National Stadium on Wednesday.
The game will decide which team advances to the final of the biennial tournament after their 0-0 stalemate at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur on Saturday.
The Muang Thong United forward said the defending champions were determined to reach the final after failing to live up to expectations in the away leg – they were below and created few scoring opportunities - in front of a partisan crowd of 80,000.
“We are not thinking about anything other than winning the home game,” said the 27-year-old Adisak, who scored a record six goals in the opening match against Timor Leste, the most by any Thai in the tournament’s history.
“Last time it was tough for us to play due to the atmosphere around the stadium. Wednesday’s game will be our turn,” added the man from Buriram province.
The Kingdom’s No1 striker has so far notched eight goals in the tournament, two shy of the record held by Indonesian Noh Alam Shah in 2007.
Setting a new record is not his priority, however.
“As of now, my main concern is to help the team win on Wednesday and reach the final. Breaking the record has never been in my mind,” Adisak said.
Although the Bangkok crowd will be less than in Kuala Lumpur due to Rajamangala’s seating capacity of 49,000, Adisak believes it will be enough to drive the War Elephants to victory.
“We will fight hard even if there are [just] 30,000-40,000 fans,” Adisak added. “We have already learned about the Malaysians’ style and who their key players are from the away game. We have no other choice but to win.”
The Thai squad trained on Monday morning at the Windmill Football Club and spent the afternoon reviewing Saturday’s game. Coach Milovan Rajevac decided to limit Monday’s training to one session since the group only returned home the night and they are due to resume on Tuesday morning.
Wednesday’s game kicks off at 7pm and will be shown live on Channel 7.
The other semi-final second-leg tie sees cock-a-hoop Vietnam host the Philippines on Thursday --– the Golden Dragons are favoured to reach the final after edging out the Azkals 2-1 in Sunday’s away leg.