|Hermans helped by inside knowledge|
|Wednesday, 30 May 2012 19:11|
Dubai: Victor Hermans experience of coaching Iran helped the experienced Dutchman plot the downfall of the defending champions as Thailand won a dramatic 2012 AFC Futsal Championship semi-final 5-4 after extra-time on Wednesday.
Iran coach Al Sanei as well as veteran skipper Vahid Shamsaee, who scored twice in the thriller at the Al Wasl Indoor Stadium including an intelligent backheel that tied the score at 4-4, were among the players groomed by Hermans when he coached the Iranians to the 2001 AFC Futsal Championship.
And the former Hong Kong and Malaysia coach could resist a good-natured jibe at a nation and team he clearly has great affection for at the post-match press conference.
“I know the Iranian system and I know many of their players including Ali and Vahid so in the end maybe you can say it was the teacher giving the pupils a lesson,” said the Dutchman following an epic final four encounter.
“I know Iranian futsal and I know they are a powerhouse in Asia but it’s good for everybody to see other countries coming up as well.”
Herman’s one-time protégé Shamsaee opened the scoring in the fourth minute before Hossein Tayebi doubled the advantage three minutes later only for Thailand to hit back almost immediately through Suphawut Thueanklang as the first-half ended 2-1.
Javad Ashgharimoghaddam made it 3-1 with 11 minutes remaining before a Suphawut penalty and a Jirawat Sornwichian effort soon after sent the thrilling semi-final into extra-time.
Apiwat Chaemcharoen gave the Thais a 4-3 lead but in a dramatic end to the absorbing contest Shamsaee equalised before Suphawut sealed the win after missing a penalty seconds earlier.
“It has been the same every game we go behind but then get back into the match but these young players really believe in themselves.
“In my heart I think we deserved the win but we cannot stay in this euphoria for too long. We will celebrate tonight but then we must prepare for the final.
“We had luck at the end but we also created three or four chances but we just needed to remain calm and this is something we must work on before the World Cup