"Up to this point it has been very demanding for us", admitted Sanchez, whose side stunned Son Heung-min's South Korea 1-0 in the quarter-finals.
Qatar, meanwhile, overcame Iraq thanks to Bassam Al Rawi's solitary goal and both teams boast a 100 per cent record at this year's tournament, meaning something has to give at Zayed Sports City Stadium on Friday. Qatar won 1-0 and will meet host UAE tomorrow in a semi-final.
Despite Qatar never having progressed beyond this stage in any of their previous nine appearances at the competition, Sanchez believes his squad is adequately equipped to cope with the undoubtedly intense nature of an AFC Asian Cup quarter-final tie.
While card trouble has cost Team Melli the Al Gharafa star, who has scored three goals in UAE 2019, the Iranians will welcome back Vahid Amiri, while Yoshinuri Muto returns from suspension for Japan.
"I was so mad at myself for not being able to play well".
The other semifinal pits Iran versus Japan on Monday and the final is scheduled for February 1.
Matches between the Arabian Gulf neighbours are always keenly contested - they have split their four Asian Cup meetings with two wins apiece - but this clash will have an extra edge.
As VAR made an eventful Asian Cup debut, Maya Yoshida had a headed goal ruled out on review before Doan was adjudged to have been fouled in the box by B.T. Dung. They are solid in all departments but they have some risky individuals too. "And that stability is a source of great strength for them". "Every player who wears it will be capable of carrying that responsibility".
Qatar's run to their first Asian Cup semi-final is all the more remarkable given the animosity shown towards them from local crowds.
Asked whether the fans had stayed away as a protest against the way the team was playing, coach Alberto Zaccheroni said that he thought they stayed away because it was a cold night and they preferred to watch the game on TV. Yes, we faced some difficulties in the group and the round of 16, especially against sides that got 10 men behind the ball. "I know I didn't perform well".