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Vietnam goalkeeper to miss Jordan friendly

By Lam Dong   May 25, 2021 | 06:24 am PT
Vietnam goalkeeper to miss Jordan friendly
Dang Van Lam in a training session of Cerezo Osaka in Japan. Photo courtesy of Cerezo Osaka.
Key keeper Dang Van Lam will not be able to play the exhibition game between Vietnam and Jordan on May 31 due to conflict in club schedule.

Lam's club in Japan, Cerezo Osaka, had initially let him join the national team on May 27. However, after Osaka’s second keeper, Japan’s Kenya Matsui, was injured, the club decided to keep Lam as a backup for their two games on May 26 and 30. Lam will only be allowed to leave Japan and join the national team in UAE for the World Cup qualifiers starting May 31. Osaka conveyed this information to the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) Tuesday.

There is no flight from Osaka to UAE until June 1, so Lam can only join the team on June 2.

Thus he will miss the May 31 friendly against Jordan, seen as an important preparation game for the World Cup qualifiers in June.

Because of Lam’s late arrival, head coach Park Hang-seo has added keeper Nguyen Van Hoang to the official squad list for the World Cup qualifiers. Vietnam will go to the UAE with 30 players.

Lam has been the number one national team goalie under Park. With Lam as the custodian, Vietnam won the AFF Cup 2018, made it into the top eight teams at Asian Cup 2019 and are leading group G in World Cup Asian qualifiers with 11 points after five games.

The problem with Lam at the moment is playing time. He has not played any game at club level since January due to a lengthy transfer from Thai club Muangthong United to Osaka. He has not played a match for his new club.

Vietnam will play Indonesia on June 7, Malaysia on the 11th and the UAE 15th. Their target is six points out of the three matches to secure a place in the final World Cup qualification round for the first time in history.

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