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Real escape with hope of progress

What the papers say
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By ESPN Staff

Al Karama confident of final comeback

HOMS, Syria, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Al Karama must overturn a two-goal deficit on Wednesday to prevent South Korea's Chonbuk Motors becoming the first east Asian team to win the AFC Champions League, but the Syrian club's coach remains confident.

Al Karama are fit and ready to claw their way back into the match at Syria's Khaled Bin Al Waleed Stadium, Mohammed Kwid said.

His confidence is justified - Al Karama are yet to lose a Champions League match at home this season. 'The final is a game of two halves,' Kwid said. 'The first half was in Korea and they took advantage but our team is ready and we will use our (home) advantage in the second.

'We have our own special strategy to beat any opponent in Homs and anyone who plays here will not go home without a defeat,' he told the Asian Football Confederation's Web site.

'Look at Al Ittihad. They are tactically better than Chonbuk and we only had a 10 percent chance to qualify for the semis but we defeated them.

'If we don't have hope then we shouldn't continue to play football.'

While Kwid remains upbeat, the Korean FA Cup winners' coach Choi Kang-hee is content with his team's cushion, courtesy of goals from midfielder Yeom Ki-hoon and Brazilian substitute Botti.

'We have prepared for to be the Champions League champions,' said the 46-year-old Choi.

'We are in good condition mentally and physically and we'll show you our best... and claim the ACL title.

'Our players are experienced and know about the disadvantage of playing away from home but we can overcome this disadvantage with our experience.'