Vietnam might still play World Cup qualifiers without home spectators

By Lam Thoa   October 20, 2021 | 01:53 am PT
Vietnam might still play World Cup qualifiers without home spectators
A wide-angle shot of My Dinh National Stadium in Hanoi. Photo courtesy of the Asian Football Confederation
Hanoi authorities are not keen on having fans in My Dinh National Stadium when Vietnam play Japan and Saudi Arabia in November.

On Wednesday evening, Hoang Dao Cuong, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism hosted a meeting with representatives from the Ministry of Health, Ministry of Public Security, Hanoi People's Committee and Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) to discuss Vietnam’s two upcoming home World Cup qualifiers.

According to a representative of Hanoi's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism, allowing spectators is not a good idea due to Covid fears.

Previously, VFF had proposed to host the games with spectators in My Dinh Stadium with 50 percent capacity, with requirements being fully vaccinated and having a negative Covid-19 test result within 72 hours.

However, this is not the final decision, since Hanoi People’s Committee hasn’t made the official announcement.

VFF still hopes that with the current situation, as the pandemic is well-controlled in Hanoi and services are reopened, city authorities would allow fans into the stadium.

"Fans are considered ‘the 12th player’ and they can help the team play better. Of six teams in group B, four teams have allowed spectators in their home games," a VFF representative said.

Vietnam are at the bottom of group B after losing all four matches so far. The team will play Japan on Nov. 11 and Saudi Arabia five days later.

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