It's not a "barometer", it hasn't to be turned victories into celebrations and defeats into tragedies - ANALYSIS

23 March 2024 12:55
It's not a "barometer", it hasn't to be turned victories into celebrations and defeats into tragedies - ANALYSIS

Azerbaijan national team played its first game in 2024. reports that Azerbaijani national team met with Mongolia within the framework of the "FIFA series - Edition 2024" project.

One goal decided the fate of the match, which took place at the Republic Stadium named after Tofig Bahramov. Bahlul Mustafazade scored the winning goal after Toral Bayramov's assist in extra time.

An incredible opponent

Until some time ago, it was unthinkable that the Azerbaijan national team would ever face Mongolia. The representative of Asia, who is 190th in the FIFA ranking, has never risen above 160th place in his history. The meeting of our national team with the representative of this kind of weak, non-football country was made possible thanks to the new project of FIFA. It is true that if Mongolia was a European country, it would be more realistic to hold friendlies and official matches with them. Azerbaijani national team had to meet with the Mongolians within the framework of FIFA's project, whose logic and purpose is not completely clear.


Whether it is within the framework of the project or at the level of unofficial, small - four-team mini-tournaments, in any case, friendly matches are not of great importance. At least these matches are not a "barometer" for the teams. It is common for people far from football to turn the victories of the friendly game into a celebration and the defeats into a tragedy. The same can be said about the meetings with Mongolia and Bulgaria on March 25. The main tests will be ahead. Azerbaijani team will compete in the League of Nations next time.

... but useful

Although friendlies are insignificant in terms of results, they have great benefits for the future. Teams test tactical schemes, test new players, players in different positions. But it is difficult to consider the encounter with Mongolia useful from this point of view. At least the fact that he is without a head coach gives reason to say so. Because the views of Arif Asadov, who led the national team, and the thoughts of the expert who will hold this post in the League of Nations may be different. If Asadov is retained in this position, it is also possible that we will benefit from the national team's profit in two matches.

Only the goalkeeper

Since we played against a weak opponent, most people predicted that we would rely on the less fortunate national team. However, except for the debutant Rza Jafarov, almost the leading players of the national team were included in the starting line-up. This is also understandable. In his debut with the national team, the head coach wanted to win, moreover, there is no small fear of not being able to defeat Mongolia. Such a result could harm both the reputation of the specialist and the image of the national team. No matter how insignificant the result was, there would be those who would not forgive the fact that the national team, hungry for victory, did not beat the 190th team in the world. Rza's playing was not related to the opponent's weakness. The fact that he had more game practice gave him a chance as "number 1".

Incredible statistics

Azerbaijani national team, which appeared in front of Mongolia with the main team, completely dominated the field. The percentage of possession of the team is 73 percent, one of the rare events. The number of matches played by Azerbaijani team can be counted on the fingers. There were incredible statistics in other indicators as well. Having scored 9 shots on goal, the national team aimed at the goal 26 times, 5 times the ball was blocked by the opponent, and 12 times the "projectile" missed the target.

Justice triumphs in the end

It would perhaps be unfair for a team with such a clear advantage not to win. It is true that there have been many such cases in football. The 8 saves of the Mongolian goalkeeper and the fact that Azerbaijani players spent their scoring opportunities right and left were also a manifestation of superiority. The Asians, who did not score a goal in their last 5 matches and were happy with a draw in only one, were still fighting with the hope of peace. But the victory of our nation, which was the fair result of the meeting, was realized later. The goal created by Toral and Bahlul, who gained a lot of experience in Europe with Qarabag and was attracted by foreign clubs, gave the national team the joy of victory.

An insignificant victory

An insignificant victory would perhaps be a normal result for other teams. But it was important for both Azerbaijani national team and its fans, which was hungry to victory. On the eve of the League of Nations, the self-confidence of the players should increase even more. If there was no victory in such a dominant match, this confidence could decrease. The most important thing is the joy and trust of the fans. Every win is for the fans, regardless of the opponent and the status of the match. Every success gives them joy and opens the way to the stadium. As the victories increase, so do the stands. Of course, a successful result has a positive effect on the FIFA rating and other indicators. Now it's Bulgaria's turn. After the representative of Asia to win the second consecutive victory, it's time to send the Europeans away from Baku disappointed. Good luck, Azerbaijani national team!

Vugar Kheyrullayev