Coach Park stands by decision to change lineup in Singapore clash

By Lam Thoa   December 30, 2022 | 03:50 pm PT
Coach Park stands by decision to change lineup in Singapore clash
Coach Park Hang-seo gives instructions to Vietnam players in the AFF Cup game against Singapore on December 30, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Hai Tu
Coach Park Hang-seo admitted that Vietnam did not play as well as expected, but stood by his decision to put away key players in the goalless draw against Singapore in AFF Cup Friday.

Compared to the lineup when Vietnam won 3-0 against Malaysia on Tuesday, Park replaced eight players and only kept goalkeeper Dang Van Lam, defender and captain Do Hung Dung. Without the strongest squad, Vietnam still got the game in control but could not break through Singapore's defense.

Although in the second half, Park put in five key players and Vietnam had more relevant chances, they still failed to find the net. Statistics showed that Vietnam had 76.8% possession, 19 shots with three on goal, while Singapore only had three shots with one on goal.

Park defended his decision of changing the lineup. "I made a few changes in this game, but this is not the first time I did that. There are 23 players in the squad and we don’t know which one will get injured next. They are national team players and they always have to be ready for anything," Park said.

The goalless draw against Singapore couldn't get Vietnam into the semifinals early although they are still topping group B with seven points.

"We only got a draw in this game, but the team still have one game left with Myanmar and we will try our best to win that match," Park said in the post-match conference.

Many Vietnam players felt unfamiliar with the artificial grass surface of Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore in this game. Park is not sure whether that’s the problem or the pressure of being visitors made his players out of tune.

"FIFA recommended not to play on artificial grass because it’s easy to get injured. However, the 2022 AFF Cup allowed it. Maybe the Singapore players got used to this stadium, so it’s easier for them to deploy their tactics and in fact, Singapore played well," Park added.

2022 AFF Cup: Singapore 0-0 Vietnam

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