Vietnam-Philippines int'l friendly: Last Asian Cup warmup for Park’s troops

Monday, 2018-12-31 18:07:43
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The Vietnamese team are training in Qatar in preparation for the 2019 Asian Cup. (Photo: VFF)
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NDO – As part of their ongoing training course in Qatar, Vietnam’s national squad will again meet the Philippines, who they defeated in the semi-finals at the recent 2018 AFF Cup, in an international friendly scheduled at 10pm (Vietnamese time) on December 31.

* Vietnam draw with DPRK 1-1 in int’l friendly

* Vietnamese team convene training for 2019 Asian Cup campaign

It will be the final match of coach Park Hang-seo’s troops in 2018 as well as their last warm-up game for the 2019 Asian Cup campaign.

In addition to the main goal of testing the players, the Republic of Korea (RoK) coach will surely look towards a triumph over coach Sven Goran Eriksson’s side aiming to provide a psychological boost ahead of the upcoming continental mission.

According to the Vietnam Football Federation, the friendly match will pose no restrictions to the number of substitutions and will be played without the media present with the view of keeping the tactics and formations secret.

Vietnam (in red) once beat the Philippines in the semifinals of the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup.

At the 2018 AFF Cup, Vietnam thrashed the Philippines 4-2 on aggregate in the semi-finals before finishing off Malaysia in the title match to claim the overall trophy in convincing fashion. After the regional loss, Eriksson has undoubtedly drawn many lessons of experience and has worked out measures to fight the “Golden Dragons”. Therefore, tonight’s friendly promises to be an exciting clash between the two sides.

As scheduled, on January 4, 2019, Park Hang-seo and his players will leave Qatar for Abu Dhabi, to prepare for their Asian Cup Group D opener against Iraq four days later. The next two group stage matches for the Vietnamese team will be against Iran and Yemen on January 12 and 16, respectively.

The “Golden Dragons” have set a target of progressing past the 2019 Asian Cup group stage.