WITH a week left before the Philippine Men's National Team takes Yemen on October 10 for the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 Qualifiers match, Azkals head coach Thomas Dooley Tuesday, October 3, admitted facing some apprehensions.

“It is a difficult and very important game for us. Yemen is a strong team and right behind us in the rankings. Those games are always tied,” Dooley said.

“I hope we can put the same pressure like we did in the first half and try to test the goalkeeper a little more often,” he added.

The former US team captain further said that they have to be more focused on defense and organized.

“When we are getting tired we must play smart. That's what we will work on in the next three days,” he added.

Previously, the Philippines defeated Yemen in Doha, Qatar during the Joint Qualification Round – 2018 Fifa World Cup Qualifiers/AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019 in 2015.

With Azkals key players Javier Patiño, Amani Aguinaldo, Luke Woodland, and Misagh Bahadoran out of the squad due to injuries, Dooley will work on the mixture of veterans and the new faces like Sean Patrick Kane from JPV Marikina FC and Jesus Joaquin Melliza from Stallion Laguna FC.

AC Horsens’ Daisuke Sato is also returning to the squad after serving his suspension. (HGD)