Vietnam have long way to go after UAE victory: coach Park

By Lam Thoa, Lam Dong   November 14, 2019 | 11:33 pm GMT+7
Vietnam have long way to go after UAE victory: coach Park
Vietnamese players celebrate their goal against UAE at the World Cup qualification match in Hanoi, November 14, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.

Coach Park Hang-seo credited Thursday's 1-0 victory against UAE to the whole team but said Vietnam still have a long, difficult road ahead.

Vietnam still have four games left in the 2022 World Cup qualification, and their next game will come in another five days, against big regional rival Thailand.

"We would soon forget tonight’s victory and would go back to practice tomorrow to prepare for that match," said Park at a press conference after the UAE game in Hanoi.

He said the victory against UAE was meaningful, bringing Vietnam to top of the group.

"It was an effort from all players, not any individual," he said.

While noting that there were some moments when the Vietnamese team’s performance faltered, Park also thought his players played to the best of their abilities and thanked them.

Nguyen Tien Linh scored the match's only goal from a beautiful swerve from outside the penalty area in the 44th minute.

"He's one of the young forwards who shows the most potential in Vietnam at the present," Park said of the 22-year-old forward.

Nguyen Tien Linh reacts after scoring against UAE in the World Cup qualification match in Hanoi, November 14, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.

Nguyen Tien Linh reacts after scoring against UAE in the World Cup qualification match in Hanoi, November 14, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.

Park and his UAE counterpart were at odds about the red card handed to UAE's midfielder Khalifa Al Hammadi in the 37th minute for a foul against forward Linh.

Park said he agreed that the referee was right to hand out a red card.

"If it weren’t for that foul, Vietnam could have scored," said Park.

But Bert van Marwijk, the Dutch coach for the UAE team, said he has watched the moment again and believed it was not a foul. "I’ve never seen a referee handing out a red card so quickly. I was shocked."

"The red card decided the game’s result tonight. I am very disappointed because we did not deserve a result like this," he said.

He insisted that his team did not deserve a loss, but still congratulated Vietnam for their win.

"Vietnam are a good team. They have very interesting playstyle, with an impressive defense roster.

"Vietnam played well tonight. You guys stand a very good chance to advance in the qualifiers," he said.

The UAE match was Vietnam's fourth for the 2022 World Cup qualifiers. They started the run with a draw against Thailand in September, before beating both Indonesia and Malaysia.

 
 
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