Vietnam need to avoid penalty in China clash

By Xuan Binh   October 6, 2021 | 04:05 pm PT
Vietnam need to avoid penalty in China clash
Dang Van Lam blocks a penalty with his leg in the World Cup qualifiers game between Vietnam and Thailand on November 19, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong
Penalties can be a risky area for Vietnam in their upcoming World Cup qualifier clash with China, who were given the most penalties in the second round of the qualifiers.

Six penalties were given to China in their most recent 13 games, while Vietnam suffered from penalties five times in the last six games, and the most of all teams in the second qualifiers.

China successfully converted all of their six penalties. For Vietnam, the only time they were awarded a penalty during World Cup qualifiers was during their match with Malaysia in June.

Vietnam have conceded four out of five penalties. The one penalty save came from keeper Dang Van Lam in the game with Thailand. But at the moment, Lam is injured and will miss the upcoming game with China. Therefore, if China get a penalty in this game, Vietnam could most likely concede a goal.

In the second round of World Cup qualifiers, China were awarded the most penalties at five. Four of those happened in the same way when their forwards got dragged down by late tackles. Vietnam also suffered two slow tackles like that, which gave UAE and Saudi Arabia a penalty each.

Aerial duels are also a penalty threat for Vietnam. China players have better physiques and Vietnam can concede points when trying to defend aerial challenges and committing fouls inside the box. They already got slapped with penalties in such situation with Thailand and Malaysia.

China’s key forward Wu Lei earned the three most recent penalties and capitalized on them himself. The 29-year-old, who is playing for Spanish club Espanyol, has a great pace and accelerates really quick, often faster than opposing defenders.

In general, to avoid penalties, Vietnam players need to avoid fouling in aerial encounters and one-on-one situations.

The Vietnam vs China match in the final round of 2022 World Cup qualifiers will take place at Sharjah Stadium in the UAE, which China chose as their ‘home ground’. It’s set to kick off at 12 a.m. on Oct. 8 (Hanoi time) and will be broadcast live on VnExpress International.

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