Vietnam to lose key defender for World Cup qualifiers

By Lam Thoa   February 22, 2021 | 01:19 am PT
Vietnam to lose key defender for World Cup qualifiers
Doan Van Hau (L) is most likely to be absent in Vietnam's upcoming World Cup 2022 qualifiers. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.
Left-back Doan Van Hau might not recover from injury in time to play the World Cup Asian qualifiers in June.

Hau's chances of appearing in the World Cup qualifiers are slim since he is still recovering from an injury sustained last year. Following the Tet holidays, he has returned to PVF Football Academy to commence rehabilitation.

According to doctors, though his recovery is progressing well, he could not return to play until at least June, meaning the defender would miss out on the World Cup qualifiers.

Meanwhile, Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has decided to host remaining group G matches for World Cup Asian qualification at one venue.

Head coach Park Hang-seo plans to gather the national team for training in May, while V. League remains temporarily paused, though it would be a risk recalling Hau so soon should his condition deteriorate.

In early 2020, the U23 team called up center-back Tran Dinh Trong for AFC U23 Championship despite the player still recovering from an ailment. Though he appeared in all Vietnam's matches at the tournament, his injury worsened to the extent that he had to spend nearly a year on the sidelines.

After returning to Hanoi FC from Dutch club SC Heerenveen last year, Hau suffered an injury in September. Three months later, having returned to the field, he tore a meniscus cartilage in his knee during training, prompting surgery.

Vietnam will face difficulties in their backline when facing Indonesia on June 7, as Dinh Trong and right-back Nguyen Trong Hoang remain suspended. The pair will only return when Vietnam clash with Malaysia on June 11 or UAE on the 15th.

The Golden Dragons are on top of group G with 11 points after five games. They need a minimum seven points in their last three games to secure a place in the next qualification round.

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