Vietnamese women's team close world’s Top 30 after SEA Games triumph

Saturday, 2019-12-14 10:51:08
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Vietnamese women team rose two places to rank 32nd in the world. (Photo: NDO/Minh Phu)
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NDO – After winning the 30th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games gold medal, the Vietnamese women's team rose two places to rank 32nd in the world, according to the latest FIFA Women’s World Rankings as announced on December 13.

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This is an encouraging reward for the national female team after their hard-fought 1-0 victory against arch-rivals Thailand in the SEA Games final held at the Rizal Memorial Stadium in Manila, the Philippines, last week.

Although the SEA Games are not included in the FIFA tournament system, soccer matches under the regional multiple sports event are still counted as friendly matches. Therefore, after winning the SEA Games gold medal, the Vietnamese women's team still accumulated points towards the FIFA rankings.

According to the latest FIFA announcement, coach Mai Duc Chung’s side collected an additional six points to accumulate a total of 1665 points, thereby climbing two places in the rankings to stand at No. 32 in the world and top in Southeast Asia.

Thus, the Vietnamese Golden Girls wrapped up a successful year at the 32nd rank in the world. In Asia, the Vietnamese women’s team are ranked 6th, after the No. 1 side Australia (7th in the world), Japan (world No. 10), DPR Korea (11th), China (15th) and the Republic of Korea (20th), respectively.

Vietnam’s women team are No. 6 in Asia. (Photo: AFC)

It also provides good encouragement for coach Chung and his players as the side aim to win their first FIFA Women's World Cup berth, with the upcoming edition of the tournament set to be the first to feature 32 teams. As one of the leading teams in Asia, the opportunity to attend the World Cup for Vietnam women's team is becoming brighter.

Meanwhile, the Thai women’s team also improved their ranking by one place, rising to 38th in the world and standing seventh in Asia, right after Vietnam.

Myanmar are 10th in Asia after climbing one place to 44th in the world, while Philippines jumped two places to rank 67th in the world rankings. Malaysia and Indonesia have also climbed one position apiece to occupy their respective 88th and 92nd placements in the world Top 100.

The world Top 5 remains unchanged, with the US women's team still holding the lead, followed by Germany, the Netherlands, France, Sweden and the UK.

After winning the AFF Cup 2019 and the SEA Games gold medal, the Vietnamese team will look forward to the next challenge in the third qualifying round of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. They will gather again on December 23 and coach Chung will make a number of personnel changes to enhance his squad.

The qualifiers will take place from February 3 to 9 next year in the Republic of Korea. Vietnam are in Group A with the hosts, DPR Korea and Myanmar. The top two teams in the two groups will progress to the play-off round scheduled for March 6 (first leg) and March 11 (second leg). The two play-off round winners will qualify for the 2020 Summer Olympics, including Japan which qualified as hosts.

TRUNG HUNG