Vietnamese fullback calls Indonesia player an 'actor'

By Hieu Luong   January 10, 2023 | 03:17 am PT
Left fullback Doan Van Hau said Indonesia midfielder Marc Klok was "just an actor" when he tried to draw a foul during a set piece at the AFF semifinal second leg Monday.

In the 74th minute, Klok stood beside Hau in Indonesia's box as Vietnam prepared to take a corner.

Suddenly, Klok fell down and acted like he was in pain. Other Indonesia players thought Hau hit Klok, so they shoved him. But the slow-motion replay revealed there was no contact from Hau at all, and that Klok was indeed putting on an elaborate performance.

After game, Hau was asked about the incident and he said: "He [Klok]'s just an actor. Don't be bothered."

Marc Klok (number 23) falls down without contact from Doan Van Hau during the second leg of AFF Cup semifinals between Vietnam and Indonesia on January 9, 2023.

In the game before that, Van Hau was involved in several duels with rival Asnawi Mangkualam, leading to more tension between both teams.

The Indonesia defender received a yellow card in the 36th minute for fouling Hau, while the Vietnamese fullback also got booked two minutes later for paying him back.

Three years ago, in the SEA Games 30 final against Indonesia, Van Hau tackled and injured Evan Dimas, then scored a brace to help Vietnam win 3-0 and claim the gold medal. That alone turned Hau into a villain in the eyes of Indonesian fans and players.

Klok was particularly angry with Hau in the Monday game and repeatedly provoked the latter.

In the first leg of this year’s semifinals at Indonesia’s Gelora Bung Karno Stadium last Friday, Hau was the recipient of many harsh tackles from his opponents.

Hau was also lucky not to get a red card when he fouled inside the box.

Before his return to second leg, he was again the center of criticism from Indonesian fans and press. Coach Shin Tae-yong even used an Instagram post to criticize the 23-year-old defender.

But Hau handled it with calm.

"The issues online stay online," he said. "I just focus on preparing well for the match. We won today thanks to such good preparation."

Doan Van Hau gets into an altercation with Indonesia players during the second leg of AFF Cup on January 9, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

Doan Van Hau gets into an altercation with Indonesia players during the second leg of AFF Cup on January 9, 2023. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

In the second leg at My Dinh National Stadium, Vietnam beat Indonesia 2-0 thanks to a brace from striker Nguyen Tien Linh.

Indonesia only outpaced Vietnam in the number of fouls, 17 to 12. Each team got two yellow cards.

The victory means that Vietnam now advance to the 2022 AFF Cup finals and have extended their clean sheet streak that began at the tournament's outset.

"I’m very happy and I want to dedicate this victory to the fans," Hau said. "Vietnam have reached the final and now is the time to prepare, regardless of the opponent."

Vietnam will play the first leg final on Friday at My Dinh Stadium, then the second leg on January 16.

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