Thailand’s Ishii prepares for last 16 on the clean sheet of his game saving keeper Anuin

January 26 – Thailand’s second-choice goalkeeper Saranon Anuin’s flawless display against Saudi Arabia saw him pick up the Man of the Match award on his international debut, as the 29-year-old inspired his team to a historic draw in the last group game of the Asian Cup.

Anuin’s heroics were the reason Thailand picked up a point as the debutant made a staggering seven crucial saves to deny the ruthless Saudi attack – including a penalty save in the eighth minute.

Speaking after the game, Anuin said: “I did my job, did my duty to the team.

“I feel great. It’s important to focus on the team as a whole, while that save was amazing for me, it’s not conceding for the whole game that matters most. I played well, but it wasn’t just me that earned the clean sheet. We played a tough side and defended well, we can be very proud of tonight.”

Having never featured in a game for Thailand before tonight, Anuin has given manager Ishii a selection headache in anticipation of his side’s knockout tie versus Uzbekistan on Tuesday.

The manager made 11 changes from the side that faced Oman on Sunday – a completely new-look squad aiming to allow first-choice players to rest from the sidelines.

Speaking on his changes, which included game-saving Anuin, Thailand manager Masatada Ishii said: “The reason for all my squad changes is from training. It’s been a month so we’ve seen the qualities of all our players. Our goal is not just to compete in this tournament but to go to the World Cup too and we need to test which players we want to take.”

Thailand’s itinerary will show an upcoming knockout game versus unbeaten Uzbekistan. Speaking of his side’s preparation for the match, Ishii said: “We go game by game. We build up to each game individually and will now switch our attention to Uzbekistan.”

“We played more defensive recently to protect results and try to progress to the next round. We need to plan and attack more in knockout games, but I think defensively we are there.”

“As we saw for Saudi Arabia, they rested players for the next round too. From doing so, we need to analyse Uzbekistan’s attack and then Korea’s attack to try and maintain our strong defence in rounds to come.”

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1711668147labto1711668147ofdlr1711668147owedi1711668147sni@g1711668147niwe.1711668147yrrah1711668147


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Tajikistan111224
China021021
Lebanon012151
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Australia210417
Uzbekistan12415
Syria111114
India003060
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Iran210627
UAE111524
Palestine111354
Hong Kong002070
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Indonesia102363
Vietnam003480
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Jordan111634
Malaysia012381
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Thailand120205
Oman021232
Krygz Rep012151