Vietnam coach wants players to stay confident for Indonesia clash

By Lam Thoa   May 12, 2023 | 01:18 am PT
Vietnam coach wants players to stay confident for Indonesia clash
Vietnam coach Philippe Troussier during the pre-match interview on May 12, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa
Football coach Philippe Troussier had said confidence is vital for Vietnamese players ahead of their men’s semifinal clash with Indonesia at the SEA Games.

"Advancing to the semifinals was the first goal of Vietnam, and it has been achieved," Troussier told the pre-match press conference Friday.

"However, Vietnam have won the gold medal in the last two SEA Games, and we have the responsibility to repeat it. That's our final goal."

Troussier expects a tough game ahead.

"There is no weak team in the semis. All teams want to win. I can't predict the result, but I'm sure that it's going to be a challenging game," he added.

According to Troussier, Indonesia are a strong team with a good tactical set up, so Vietnam have to be at their best.

"Matches like this are good for Southeast Asian football," he said.

Despite a difficult preparation for the Games, with five straight losses in friendlies, Vietnam performed well in the group stage with wins against Laos, Singapore and Indonesia, then a draw with Thailand.

The team finished second in group B behind Thailand, which pits them against Indonesia who topped group A.

Vietnam only have one day of rest, while Indonesia have two. But Troussier said the most important thing was confidence.

"Half of the team are below 20. They have talent and potential but lack experience. I have tried to channel their confidence through my tactics for the past two months. I hope they can maintain that confidence after the game with Thailand," he said.

Vietnam suffered a long wait to get the SEA Games football gold before Park Hang-seo led the team to glory in 2019.

Park led the team to successfully defend their title on home soil at the next SEA Games in 2022, defeating Thailand 1-0 in the final.

Commentators say things will be tougher for Troussier as he has a weaker squad.

In addition, the competition no longer allows overage players, which had a crucial part in Vietnam’s victories at the last two Games.

"I like the pressure because it brings me more motivation to do a good job," Troussier said.

Vietnam's semifinal clash with Indonesia will be held on Saturday at 4 p.m., and will be reported live on VnExpress International.

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