Soccer: Armenia coach notes higher competition among squad players

Soccer: Armenia coach notes higher competition among squad players


Vardan Minasyan

Armenia has seen an increased competition among squad players, according to the national team’s head coach.

Speaking at a press conference on Monday, Vardan Minasyan commented on the results and performance of his charge in the two friendly matches played in Cyprus on February 28 and 29.

The tactician said the friendly matches were meant to enable coaches to see younger and less experienced players in action.

Playing mostly its second team, Armenia lost to Serbia in the first of the two friendlies 0-2. The following day, however, the main team including debut-making Araz Ozbiliz from AFC Ajax, beat Canada 3-1. Minasyan said he saw the potential of the novice who took a penalty shot to score his first goal for the nation in the match in Cyprus.

Analyzing the two matches, Minasyan said that they revealed at least three or four young players who can contribute to the main team in the time to come.

“I got answers to lots of questions and now I can say for sure that we have a higher competition among our national team players,” said Minasyan. He added, however, that the goalkeeper position still remains a headache for Armenia that will have to play without its ‘red-carded’ veteran Roman Berezovsky in the opening match of the FIFA World Cup 2014 qualifying campaign against Malta next September.

In preparation for the tournament that will be played through 2013 (and in which Armenia’s rivals are also Italy, Denmark, the Czech Republic and Bulgaria) Armenia will play at least another two friendly matches – against Greece in Austria on May 31, and against Belarus in Yerevan on August 15.