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Training kicks off for VN women’s football team




Deputy captain Nguyễn Thị Tuyết Dung says the door is open for Việt Nam to qualify for the 2022 Asian Cup but they still need to focus to win every match in the qualification tournament in September. Photo courtesy of VFF

HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam’s women’s football team trained together for the first time yesterday. The team is aiming to secure a berth in the finals of the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022 and further a slot in the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Head coach Mai Đức Chung has picked 34 players who he believes performed the best in the national cup and the U19 and U21 tournaments in 2020 and 2021.

“My players come from six clubs and are both experienced and young. Among them are Đặng Thị Mai and Lê Thị Thùy Trang who have joined the national squad for the first time,” Chung told Việt Nam News.

“Veterans Trần Thị Thùy Trang and Phạm Hoàng Quỳnh, who left my team a couple of years ago for different reasons, have come back. Hà Nam’s Quỳnh is a skilled midfielder while Trang, despite her age, is still an active and stable midfielder for HCM City.”

“I have also called up young faces like Trần Thị Duyên and Dương Thị Vân who have just recovered from injuries, to test their abilities,” Chung said.

There are 28 teams playing in the qualifiers divided into eight groups. 

Việt Nam, world No 32, are in Group B with hosts Tajikistan, ranked 135; the Maldives, ranked 144; and Afghanistan, ranked 152. Matches will be held in mid-September.

After a two month break, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, coach Chung has a lot of work to do.

“We will watch the players practice first and adjust our exercise program if needed. Then, I will arrange matches for them to practise. I hope that they will get inspired and make it difficult for me to choose the final list for the tournament,” said the 71-year-old who is for the first time being assisted by fitness coach Cedric Serge Christian Roger from Germany.

Việt Nam has a higher world ranking compared to their rivals but Chung is still cautious.

“Tajikistan, Afghanistan and Maldives are foreign to us. We have never played a West Asian team yet. I think that they have also received a lot of support to develop.”

“They stand far below us but don’t think it will be easy to beat them. I am doing my research and have asked my players to try their hardest every time. We must get a good result to qualify for the finals.”

Deputy captain Nguyễn Thị Tuyết Dung confirmed her team’s determination at the coming Cup.

“We are all affected by the pandemic which has prevented us from competing. However, we kept practising within the club’s centre to retain our physique and technique,” she said.

“In this competition, coaches combine a team of seniors and juniors. We will be a united team and pay attention to all of the qualifiers. We have a high chance to advance to the finals but we respect all of our rivals and will try to defeat them one by one,” she told Việt Nam News.

The winning team from each group will clinch a place in the AFC Women’s Asian Cup India 2022, scheduled to take place from January 20 to February 6.

Defending champions Japan, 2018 runners-up Australia, and third-placed China PR, as well as hosts India, have already qualified.

Following this, the top five teams will go on to represent Asia, along with hosts Australia, at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

“We aim at the top place of the group to qualify for the Asian Cup before securing a ticket to the World Cup,” said Việt Nam Football Federation Vice President Trần Quốc Tuấn.

Tuấn said the VFF will adjust the domestic competition so that the national squad’s footballers will have more time to prepare for upcoming international fixtures.

“Apart from domestic training camps, VFF will also arrange intensive courses abroad and talk with other federations to arrange international friendly matches to warm-up ahead of the qualification.

“These activities are important for players who have not played a single international match for more than one year,” he said.

Việt Nam who are currently No 6 in Asia were very close to the World Cup in 2015 when they lost 1-2 to Thailand in a play-off match.



First win for Vietnam at Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone



The Vietnamese tennis team got off to a perfect start at the 2021 Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group III tournament in Jordan after a 2-1 win over Pacific Oceania in their Pool B opener on September 15.

Vietnamese players in red jerseys at the 2021 Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group III

Vietnamese players in red jerseys at the 2021 Davis Cup Asia/Oceania Zone Group III

The team representing Pacific Oceania is made up from various national teams from the Oceania region, except for Australia and New Zealand, including Colin Sinclair who currently ranks 723rd in the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) rankings, the highest place in the tournament.

In the first singles match, Trinh Linh Giang handled Mainguy Clement 4-6, 6-3, and 7-5 in three sets, putting Vietnam 1-0 in front.

The second singles clash saw Colin Sinclair of Pacific Oceania overwhelm Vietnamese star Ly Hoang Nam 4-6, 6-4, and 4-6 in three sets, earning an equalizer.

In the doubles match, Ly Hoang Nam/ Le Quoc Khanh defeated pair Colin Sinclair/ Baudinet Brett to go 2-1 up.

Next up for Vietnam will be a clash against Qatar on September 16 afternoon.

Source: VOV


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Vietnam national tennis team claim first Davis Cup win



Vietnam national tennis team claim first Davis Cup win

Vietnam players celebrate after the victory over Pacific Oceania in Davis Cup on September 15, 2021. Photo by Vietnam Tennis Federation

Vietnam won 2-1 against Pacific Oceania on the first day of Davis Cup Asia-Oceania zone matches Wednesday.

Trinh Linh Giang played first, facing Mainguy Clement. Giang let Clement win the first set, but came back stronger in the next two sets to claim victory.

In the second match, the key player of Vietnam, Ly Hoang Nam, battled Colin Sinclair, the star of Pacific Oceania. Sinclair won the first set and Nam equalized, but the Vietnamese lost in the last set.

After two matches, the score was 1-1 and the result was decided by the final match, as Nam and Le Quoc Khanh played Sinclair and Baudinett Brett in the doubles. The Vietnamese players won the first set, before Pacific Oceania equalized. In an intense third set, Nam and Khanh wrapped it up with a triumph. Overall, Vietnam won 2-1 after 7.5 hours of competition with Pacific Oceania.

This victory pushed Vietnam to the top of their group. The team will play Qatar on the second day Thursday.

Previously, Vietnam had been chosen to host group three of the Davis Cup Asia-Oceania zone. But because of the ongoing Covid-19 wave in the country, the International Tennis Federation instead appointed Jordan as host.


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Hải Phòng FC proposes plan to organise World Cup qualifiers matches at their stadium



Hải Phòng FC would like to host Việt Nam’s matches team in the final round of the 2022 World Cup qualifiers campaign at Lạch Tray stadium after international media complained about the grass quality at Mỹ Đình stadium. Photo courtesy of Hải Phòng FC

HẢI PHÒNG — Following complaints about the state of the pitch at Việt Nam’s national stadium, Hải Phòng FC is offering to host the next round of World Cup qualifier games.

After the loss to Australia last week, the condition of the pitch at Mỹ Đình was heavily criticised.

Now Hải Phòng FC president Trần Văn Hoàn, has written to the People’s Committee and Department of Culture and Sports of Hải Phòng, asking to work with the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) on the possibility of Lạch Chay stdium hosting the matches against Saudi Arabia on November 16 and China on February 1.

In the proposal, the club says they believe that organising Việt Nam’s matches on low quality grass surface such as Mỹ Đình will affect the professional quality of the game as well as the image of the country.

VFF board members said that they have not yet received the proposal from Hải Phòng. However, the possibility of the national team playing at Lạch Tray is low due to many regulations of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).

Rules state the stadium must be near an international airport so that the visiting team can minimise the travel distance, be close to a five-star hotel to ensure safety and have training facilities nearby.

After the 1-0 victory against Việt Nam, Australian coach Graham Arnold complained about the grass of Mỹ Đình, saying it had detrimental effect on his team’s performance.

Australian media even compared the stadium surface to a “cow paddock”.

Mỹ Đình Stadium is a non-business unit under the management of the General Department of Physical Education and Sports. VFF has to pay a fee every time the national team plays there.

Addressing the criticism of the pitch, director of the Mỹ Đình National Sports Complex Nguyễn Trọng Hồ said: “The grass is still good as AFC has checked and assessed the pitch to be of good quality, thereby allowing the match to be held.”

Currently, Hải Phòng FC is waiting for the permission of the People’s Committee and the Department of Culture and Sports of Hải Phòng city to work with VFF. If this is approved, the representative of the club will send an official letter to VFF.

Lạch Tray stadium used to be considered one of the low-quality stadiums in Việt Nam. However, the team has just invested to improve the grass, lights and facilities.

In the 2022 World Cup third round qualification, Việt Nam are still to win a point after two defeats to Saudi Arabia and Australia and are only above the bottom team China in group B thanks to a better goal difference.

The team will return to training on September 16 to prepare for the two away matches against China and Oman in October.


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