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 By Jason Dasey

Nelo Vingada: Malaysia players are 'fantastic', can still make Asian Cup

ESPN FC's Jason Dasey and Stanley Bernard assess Malaysia's national team campaign and if Vingada is under pressure.
Jason Dasey talks with Malaysia U22 manager Ong Kim Swee following his side's return from China.
Jason Dasey speaks with Felda United's Dino Djulbic to discuss his expectations at his new club.
Malaysia national coach Nelo Vingada
Malaysia coach Nelo Vingada sits down for an exclusive interview with ESPN FC in Kuala Lumpur.

KUALA LUMPUR -- New national coach Nelo Vingada says Malaysia are still capable of making the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, despite a disastrous start to their qualifying campaign in which they fell to a last-minute 2-1 home defeat against Lebanon.

In an exclusive interview with ESPN FC, Vingada refused to criticise his players, calling them "special and fantastic" and like his "sons".

And he compared Malaysia's collapse against Lebanon on June 13, when they conceded two goals in the last 15 minutes to blow...

India on right track, but mind the potholes

Sunil Chhetri: India's Batman without a Robin
Sunil Chhetri: India's Batman without a Robin.

Let's be honest, this Indian team has flaws.

The numbers are impressive but they don't tell the entire story. India have huffed, puffed, got the 'job done', but there are loopholes. Loopholes that, if not addressed, could fade the shining light. Based on the two Asian Cup qualifiers, both 1-0 wins, here are a few concerns Constantine would need to address before India take the pitch next against Macau on September 5.

The midfield

India's biggest weakness lies in midfield. In both games - Myanmar and...

While Chhetri scores winners, Gurpreet continues to lead India from the back

While Chhetri scored the winner, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu made several crucial saves in India's 1-0 win over Kyrgyzstan.
While Chhetri scored the winner, Gurpreet Singh Sandhu made several crucial saves in India's 1-0 win over Kyrgyzstan.

Sunil Chhetri was named Man of the Match against Kyrgyzstan for his winning goal in India's Asian Cup qualifier in Bengaluru on Tuesday night but an alternative candidate could have been goalkeeper Gurpreet Singh Sandhu, whose role was just as important.

A series of saves in India's 1-0 win was only the latest of Sandhu's strong international performances, a run that has coincided with India's rise up the rankings of world football to 100. Sandhu has started almost all the matches, conceding two goals...

Nelo Vingada in race against clock for Malaysia's Asian Cup dream

Jason Dasey and Singapore international Fazrul Nawaz preview Malaysia's Asian Cup qualifier against Lebanon.
Jason Dasey and PJ Roberts assess Nelo Vingada's appointment as Malaysia coach and what he has to do to succeed.
Jason Dasey and John Wilkinson recap all the decisive AFC Cup action as JDT advanced while Tampines and Felda were sent packing.
Ceres-Negros overcame Tampines Rovers to seal their place in the 2017 AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal semifinals at Jalan Besar Stadium.
Coach Nelo Vingada and Malaysia national team
Nelo Vingada will oversee his first game in charge of Malaysia in Tuesday's Asian Cup qualifier against Lebanon.

Nelo Vingada may only have been sitting on Malaysian football's hot seat for a matter of weeks, but the Portuguese coach has already taken ownership of the task that lies ahead.

The former Saudi Arabia and Jordan coach takes his team into their first game together on Tuesday night when Malaysia meet Lebanon in their opening AFC Asian Cup qualifier at Johor's Larkin Stadium.

But, despite a limited amount of time working with his new players, the 64-year-old has no plans to ease himself into the role.

"This...