Coach Park shortlists four new players for national team

By Hoang Nguyen   April 15, 2020 | 12:30 am PT
Coach Park shortlists four new players for national team
Coach Park Hang-seo in an interview with VnExpress on April 7, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.
Coach Park Hang-seo says he has four new faces in mind as he seeks to renovate the Vietnamese men’s national football team.

The four players are: midfielder Nguyen Hai Huy (Than Quang Ninh); midfielder Ho Khac Ngoc (Song Lam Nghe An); left winger Vo Huy Toan (HCMC FC); and striker/right-back Duong Van Hao (Viettel FC).

In a recent interview, Park said he has created three more new formations for the national team.

"It’s true that our opponents have become familiar with our tactics. As a professional coach, I understand the importance of changes. At the moment, the coaching board and I are working every day to find even the smallest detail to improve our current tactics as well as preparing for new ones," Park told VnExpress.

The coach also said he wants to improve the midfield because there are many talented players for this position.

"Many great midfielders are emerging in Vietnam at the moment, so I want to take advantage of this," he said.

The goal of Vietnam this year is to go further than previous attempts at the World Cup 2022 qualifiers and successfully defend the AFF Cup.

With opponents getting familiar with Vietnam’s tactics pretty well, Park’s attempt to find new faces could be part of efforts to generate the surprise factor, observers say.

Midfielder Nguyen Hai Huy is an orchestrator for Than Quang Ninh. He possesses a great skill-set, including dribbling and shooting, which was demonstrated in a solo goal against Cambodian side Svay Rieng at the AFC Cup this year.

Hai Huy in Than Quang Ninh jersey. Photo courtesy of Than Quang Ninh.

Nguyen Hai Huy in his Than Quang Ninh jersey. Photo courtesy of Than Quang Ninh.

"I am happy to be noticed by coach Park, as my effort has been recognized. I’m 28 years old now and I don’t think I have many chances to be chosen for the national team. If I’m called up, it would be an honor," Huy said.

Another midfielder, Ho Khac Ngoc, is an Song Lam Nghe An (SLNA) star. An intelligent player on the field, he was dubbed "the Vietnamese Fabregas" for his accurate passes with a success rate of 89 percent. Despite long injury layoffs, Ngoc has always performed well when he gets to play and is currently the key midfielder of SLNA.

The left wingback position has been a headache for Park in recent times. He only has Doan Van Hau as a reliable choice. Vietnam often struggle when Hau cannot play, and this was seen at the AFC U23 Championship this year, when the team exited the tournament at the group stage.

Vo Huy Toan in AFF Cup 2014. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.

Vo Huy Toan at the AFF Cup 2014. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.

But the coach finally has another option for the position, a more offensive one. Vo Huy Toan of HCMC FC is known for his surprising pace and clever left foot plays. He was called up to the national team in AFF Cup 2014, and scored one goal. The 27-year-old plays for HCMC now and is hoping to return to the national team.

The last player in Park’s new shortlist is the versatile Duong Van Hao, who can play as a striker and a left-back. He was a member of the U20 team that participated in the U20 World Cup 2017. But he suffered a serious injury later that heavily damaged his ankle and threatened his football career. He returned in the second round of V. League 2020 and immediately contributed an assist for his club Viettel FC.

The Vietnamese men’s national football team is set to gather for training and play a friendly in June. Fans are generally excited and expectant about the promise that the new players bring to the team.

go to top