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Akira Nishino: 'I want to reach the top of the strongest Asian teams with Thailand'

Akira Nishino: 'I want to reach the top of the strongest Asian teams with Thailand'

Speaking after a preliminary agreement with FAT, coach Akira Nishino set a goal to join the Thailand football team to top the best teams in Asia.

After coach Sirisak Yodyardthai was forced to resign because of a lack of qualifications, the Thailand Football Federation decided to appoint Japanese coach Akira Nishino as coach of the Thailand national team and the Thailand U23 football team.

Speaking after successful negotiations with FAT, Mr. Akira Nishino affirmed that he was very happy to work with Thailand football. The Japanese strategist revealed the ambition with the 'War Elephants' to reach the continent.

Replying to the Golden Temple media, coach Akira Nishino expressed his wish: "Thailand is a great football team with great potential and technique. I want to join the Thailand team to top the best teams in Asia".

Thai football is in crisis when losing the status of 'Southeast Asian king' in the hands of the Vietnam football team. They continuously failed in major tournaments of the region and continents such as the Asian finals U23 2018, Asia 2018, AFF Cup 2018, Asian Cup 2019, Asian U23 qualifiers 2020 and most recently King's Cup 2019.

In the aforementioned tournaments, Vietnam football has achieved impressive achievements. In particular, Vietnam U23 team beat Thailand U23 team with the score 4-0 in My Dinh (Vietnam), the Vietnamese football team won against the Thai team right at Chang Arena. This makes the Thailand Football Federation determined to recruit a great coach, to help the "Elephant War" reclaim the No. 1 position and head to the continent.

Previously, Thailand Football Federation President Somyot Poompanmoung wanted to recruit a talented coach to help the 'War Elephant' regain Southeast Asia's No. 1 position from Vietnam. "I am looking for a coach who can bring the Thailand team back to Southeast Asia. After that, we want to go to the continental and farther leagues, the World Cup".

64-year-old coach Akira Nishino, is one of the most successful coaches in the land of the rising sun. He helped the Japanese team to the eighth round in the 2018 World Cup. In the past, coach Akira Nishino used to lead Japan U20 football team (1991-1992) and Japan U23 football team (1994-1996).

Akira Nishino used to hold Kashiwa Reysol, Gamba Osaka, Vissel Kobe and Nagoya Grampus clubs. In particular, the rulers used to win the AFC Champions League with the club Gamba Osaka in 2008. This achievement helped Akira Nishino be voted the best coach in 2008 by the Asian Football Federation (AFC).

At the drawing ceremony of the 2022 World Cup Qualifiers in Asia, the Vietnam football team was in the second seed group, while Thailand football team fell into group 3. It is entirely possible that the 'Golden Dragon' and the 'Warring Elephant' will share the same table. This helped Akira Nishino get a chance to compete with the most successful South East Asian football coach currently coach Park Hang Seo.