Coach Park defends player ahead of Singapore game

By Nghia Thang   December 29, 2022 | 03:08 am PT
Coach Park defends player ahead of Singapore game
Vietnam head coach Park Hang-seo during a press conference before the AFF Cup match against Singapore, December 29, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Hai Tu
Vietnam head coach Park Hang-seo said wing-back Doan Van Hau didn't deserve to take criticism after the AFF Cup game with Malaysia, that Hau was just doing his job.

After the 3-0 win of Vietnam against Malaysia, Hau was criticized for committing multiple fouls during the game. Things got so intense that the 23-year-old had to turn off commenting on his social media.

"I know that many people are criticizing Hau and I understand why. He was a little bit too aggressive in some plays. But we must acknowledge that on the field, the players will give their all. Hau was just doing his job and he never wanted to hurt anyone," Park said at a press conference Thursday before Vietnam's next game with Singapore.

Vietnam are topping group B thanks to winning 6-0 against Laos and 3-0 against Malaysia. The Golden Dragons will get an early ticket to the semifinals if they continue to claim three points on Friday against Singapore, who also got two wins after two games.

"Our goal is victory, every single game, even when we are the away team," Park said. "Both teams got two wins, so whoever comes out on top will reach the semifinals. I don’t see a big difference in preparation time, because Singapore had to fly back from Laos, while we from Hanoi to Singapore. I want to achieve the best result," Park said.

Singapore have won the AFF Cup four times, in 1998, 2004, 2007 and 2012. However, they have been on the decline for the past decade. After failing to make it past the group stage in three consecutive tournaments, Singapore finally reached the semifinals in last year’s competition where they lost to Indonesia. Coach Park refused to compare the current Singapore team with the last year’s team and said he hasn’t predicted their lineup for this game.

"It seems like Singapore play defensively with high blocks and players with great pace. Vietnam will have to prepare carefully. We have done 80% of the preparation and the remaining 20% will be finished in the final training session before the game," Park added.

Among participating countries in this AFF Cup, only Singapore used artificial grass for their pitch. However, Park is not worried about it.

"Singapore had a really nice pitch with natural grass. We have played there last year. I don’t know why they decided to use artificial grass for this tournament. The players will get injured easier when they play on artificial grass. But I don’t see any problem with this, we will have to adapt. The players can use whatever type of boots they want," he said.

Vietnam will play Singapore at 7:30 p.m. on Friday (Hanoi time). The game will be reported live on VnExpress International.

go to top