Vietnam coach not overawed by Japan

By Staff reporters   January 23, 2019 | 07:40 pm PT
Vietnam coach not overawed by Japan
Head coach Park Hang-seo in an interview before the game with Japan on Wednesdsay. Photo by VnExpress/Anh Khoa
Coach Park Hang-seo is confident ahead of Vietnam’s big Asian Cup quarterfinal against Japan Thursday night.

Japan are the strongest team in the tournament, but that makes it an interesting challenge for Vietnam, he said.

"I watched Japan’s game with Saudi Arabia, and I must say Japan are truly the strongest team in this tournament. Their players are experienced and have great individual skills. This game will definitely be a tough one, but it’s also an opportunity to test ourselves."

But the Korean has faith in his players.

"My players will have to give their best to overcome this challenge and win. Japan most likely will play offensive football right from the start, because they are the stronger team. But I believe the players will not step down and will fight with all of their strength."

Midfielder Luong Xuan Truong said, "I don’t know when this fairytale will end, but we want to go as far as we can."

Japan’s head coach, Hajime Moriyasu, said Japan are ready for the game.

"After the last game, our players were a bit tired. But now we are fully recovered. The team is ready for the game despite having one day less to rest than Vietnam."

Japan head coach Hajme Moriyasu at a press conference on Wednesday.  Photo by VnExpress/Anh Khoa

Japan head coach Hajme Moriyasu at a press conference on Wednesday. Photo by VnExpress/Anh Khoa

Japanese midfielder Gaku Shibasaki, who plays for Getafe FC in Spain’s topflight La Liga, said Vietnam are strong and Japan need to try hard.

"I have watched Vietnam’s games. Since they qualified for the quarterfinals, they are a strong team too. Vietnam are a young team with great fighting spirit and skills. We will have to try harder."

The game kicks off in Dubai at 8 p.m. Thursday (Hanoi time) and will be reported live.

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