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The Macao men’s football team goes down 0-2 to Myanmar

Outgunned at every turn by a physically superior Myanmar side, the SAR squad struggled to find form in its second international match of the year.

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Outgunned at every turn by a physically superior Myanmar side, the SAR squad struggled to find form in its second international match of the year.

ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 8:14 am

Macao’s second international match of the year ended in a 0-2 defeat against Myanmar on Monday.

The closed-door friendly – broadcast live on TDM – was held in the Chinese port city Dalian, with coach Lázaro Oliveira handing three Macao players their debut: Vitor Almeida, 32, Leong Hou In, 25, and Leong Wai Hin, 17. However, the SAR (at 182 in the FIFA rankings) struggled physically against a dominant Myanmar side (ranked 160). 

The two teams have met three times previously, with Myanmar winning each encounter. This match kept to form, with the Myanmar players creating big chances in the opening 10 minutes and keeping Macao’s defenders on their toes. 

[See more: What’s next for football in Macao?]

Macao did well to hold off the opposition until the deadlock was broken in the 22nd minute with a volley by Myanmar attacker, Lwin Moe Aung. Close to half-time, Myanmar’s top striker Than Paing missed an opportunity to take the team two goals up. 

In the second half, Macao’s Jerry Chan was forced off with an injury in the 64th minute. Then an unfortunate handball from debutant Vitor Almeida, in the 92nd minute, led to a penalty that Maung Maung Lwin converted to seal Myanmar’s victory and delight a side that has scored just one goal in its last four games.

Macao was captained by top local scorer Nicholas Torrão, who missed the previous international friendly, against Singapore, due to an injury.

The striker said that Macao simply couldn’t match Myanmar in terms of physicality. “Even in terms of being more aggressive on the ball, we need to work on those aspects and control the ball more and play how the coach wants us to,” he told Macao News after the game. 

At the same time, he was philosophical about the squad’s defeat. “It’s a friendly match, so it’s a good game to see where the mistakes are and what can change or be done better,” Torrão said.

[See more: Macao’s first international football match in three years ends in defeat]

The team hopes to have one or two more friendly internationals over the summer, to better prepare for its tilt at the World Cup Qualifiers in October and adjust to the new coach’s ideas. 

Oliveira has certainly demanded more from the players since his arrival. “We are here to develop the mentality of the players to go head-on and raise our competitive levels,” he said in an interview with Macao News in March.

 

UPDATED: 22 Dec 2023, 8:14 am

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