Viettel FC prepare for tough AFC Champions League clash

By Lam Thoa   July 1, 2021 | 10:52 pm PT
Viettel FC prepare for tough AFC Champions League clash
Viettel defender Que Ngoc Hai in a conference ahead of the AFC Champions League game between Viettel FC and BG Pathum United on July 2, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Thu Ha.
It won't be easy for V. League champions Viettel FC to face Thai League champions BG Pathum United in AFC Champions League (ACL) Friday night.

"The game between Viettel and Pathum will be interesting. Vietnam and Thailand are rivals on national team level, and this game is between representatives from both countries," Viettel defender Que Ngoc Hai told a Friday press conference.

"Pathum are a strong club, so this is expected to be a tough game for Viettel. I have watched two games of Pathum. They have strong firepower with two quality strikers that I will have to keep my eyes on. I’ll try my best to complete the job."

Pathum clinched the Thai League title last year. They became champions with six games to play, a league record. In 30 games, they only lost once. Their squad includes some key players from the national team and several from Brazil. Like Viettel, Pathum won against Filipino side Kaya-Iloilo and lost to defending champions, South Korean club Ulsan Hyundai, at ACL this season.

Viettel and Pathum have three points after two games, but Viettel are placing above due to a greater goal difference.

The Viettel squad includes five national team players that advanced to the final round of World Cup Asian qualifiers last month, along with two quality foreign strikers.

Viettel coach Jurgen Gede said: "Viettel have a slight edge in mentality after winning the last game against Kaya. However, Pathum are a strong club, with many national players so we have to focus on them. We cannot reveal our tactic, but it’ll be a suitable one. But first, we have to control the game well and then find a way to get the ball forward."

Gede added Pathum have the home advantage so they might approach the game with domination. He hoped Viettel would respond well and gain another victory.

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