China, Iran and Uzbekistan preferred to remain tight-lipped about their teams’ chances for the Asian Cup Football Finals scheduled for July 7-29.
The three teams are Malaysia’s opponents in Group C of the tournament, which will be played at the National Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
All chief coaches of the three teams have been in Kuala Lumpur (KL) since Sunday for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) workshops as well as to inspect the venue of the competition.
At the press conference after the inspection, the coaches preferred to talk about the hot and humid conditions in KL.
Uzbekistan coach Rauf Inileev said that it was too early to talk about their preparations but hoped that they would be able to advance to the knockout stage from a tough group.
Iran coach Amir Galahnoie chose to say more.
"We will start our preparations 35 days before the Finals. We also intend to play four friendly matches before coming to KL," he said.
Chinese coach Zhu Guanghu was the most vocal of the three, stating that their foreign-based players in English and German leagues would be available to play for the country.
"There will be some changes in the team when the final list is announced. Our squad will be a mix of players from the English Premier League, Bundesliga and the national Olympic team," he said. "We will start the final preparations once the domestic and international league are completed next month."
Guanghu added that they were pleased to play their matches in Malaysia because they could enjoy good crowd support.
All the three representatives and AFC officials gave their thumbs up to the venue at Bukit Jalil.
The AFC assistant general secretary and director of competitions, Carlo Nohra, said: "Initially, the field conditions were not up to mark.
"But the FAM and the local organising committee have done a good job to improve the conditions over the past few months. We are confident that everything will be ready for the Finals."
Besides the main venue, the Shah Alam Stadium, which is the alternative venue for the Group C matches, and the training grounds at the KL Football Stadium in Cheras, MBPJ in Kelana Jaya and the FAM training ground were also inspected.