Today, in anticipation of the upcoming qualifying match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup between Lebanon and Turkmenistan on October 10, a press conference was held in Beirut with the participation of the head coaches of the teams.
This year, the Lebanese national team coached by the 48-year-old formerly Romanian football player Liviu Ciobotariu. He was called to the Romanian national team from 1997 to 2001, spent 32 games in which he scored three goals. As part of the team, he entered the playoffs of the 1998 FIFA World Cup and the UEFA Euro 2000. Like the whole Romanian team, at the 1998 FIFA World Cup matches, Ciobotariu dyed his hair yellow, which usually brought good luck to the Romanian team.
At the end of his player career, over the past 13 years he has worked as a coach in various clubs in Romania. In the seasons 2015-2016 and 2017-2018 was coached the Al-Faisaly FC and Al-Tai FC teams in Saudi Arabia. Prior to his appointment as the head coach of the Lebanese national team, he worked for one season with the Romanian Botoșani FC.
– Turkmenistan have good players. We must defend as a team in order to block the danger of their good players. Turkmenistan captain Arslanmyrat Amanov is a really good player. I have full trust in my players. The 23 players are the best Lebanese players. I am waiting for a positive result. In the training, I felt a good energy, a winning spirit. We will need the full support of our fans!
– Why Hassan Cheaito wasn’t called up?
– It’s due to his current form. But we will need him in the future.
– Why Khalil Khalis wasn’t called up?
– I called him up for the national team last month but he refused to come because of his university in the USA. Khalil is one of my favorite player but everyone must know that I want players who are ready to bleed for the Lebanon.
– Any injuries?
– I asked the federation to postpone the Lebanese league last weekend in order to avoid injuries but unfortunately it didn’t happen. Thank God only Yehya El-Hindi got injured and I called up Ahmad Jalloul to replace him. Jalloul deserves it. He has a good spirit.
– Why the goalkeeper Ahmad Taktouk was called-up?
– He knows very well the national team and the players. I want to create some competition in the goalkeeping department.
– You adopted the pro active style in playing worked in West Asia, but didnt work against a team who stayed behind like DPR Korea (who capitilized from two counter attacks). Do you still believe this is the right system to adopt or do you think you have to change because of the Lebanese players characteristics?
– I have an offensive philosophy but of course we must find a balance. I don’t have too much time to prepare the team.
– Do you know Hussein El-Dor?
– I knew about him two days ago. I will call him soon.