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Việt Nam, Oman look to the future and name uncapped youngsters for their clash




Adriano Schmidt has been called up to the national team. The Vietnamese-German defender is one of three new players called up for Việt Nam’s last two World Cup qualifying games. — Photo Bình Định FC

HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam and Oman have both named uncapped players in their squads for their World Cup qualifying clash in Hà Nội.

Coach Park Hang-seo introduced some unexpected faces, who have won his trust after just three rounds of the V.League 1, which started late last month.

Park, who recovered from COVID-19 last week, called up 28 players; four goalkeepers, 11 defenders, eight midfielders and five forwards.

Keeper Nguyễn Tuấn Mạnh and midfielders Nguyễn Tuấn Anh and Nguyễn Hải Huy return to the team after missing out against China.

Joining them are three new faces – goalie Vũ Tuyên Quang and defenders Nguyễn Văn Vĩ and Adriano Schmidt.

Schmidt is a Vietnamese-German player who has played at the V.League 1 since the 2018 season. The 27-year-old competed for Hải Phòng for four years before moving to Bình Định this season.

The 1.84m defender will be expected to strengthen Việt Nam’s backline against Oman on March 24 at Mỹ Đình National Stadium and again against Japan five days later.

He made headlines as an overseas Vietnamese player whose dream of playing for the national team member came true after years of effort.

Việt Nam will be without the services of multi-purposed midfielder Nguyễn Trọng Hoàng, who has herniated disc and defenders Đỗ Duy Mạnh and Đoàn Văn Hậu, and goalkeeper Đặng Văn Lâm, who all suffer from injuries.

Players will start training on Tuesday in Hà Nội. 

Việt Nam are at the bottom of Group B with three points, while Oman are at fourth with eight points. Both have no chance of qualifying for the World Cup.

Oman coach Branko Ivankovic also announced a 29-strong team made up of U23 players on Saturday.

To prepare for the Asian Cup next year, Ivankovic has dropped his older players, such as keeper Faiz Al-Rushaidi, midfielder Harib Al-Saadi, forward Khalid Al-Hajri and skipper Mohsin Al-Khaldi, all key members previously.

New faces are forward Muhsen Al-Ghassani, 21, and midfielders Zahir Al-Aghbari, 22, and Salaah Al Yahyaei, 23. They are the rising stars of Oman’s football.

Việt Nam lost 3-1 to Oman last October in Muscat.

The match in Mỹ Đình will welcome up to 20,000 spectators, all of whom are fully vaccinated and must strictly follow the Ministry of Health’s 5K messages, including completing a health declaration.

They are recommended to undergo a COVID-19 test before entering the stadium and shouldn’t go there if they have any COVID symptoms.

This is Việt Nam’s last qualification at home.

In other news, as Park is busy with the World Cup campaign, his assistant Lee Young-Jin will take charge of the national U23 team competing at the International Dubai Cup on March 23-29.

Coach Lee Young-Jin will take charge of the national U23 team for the International Dubai Cup. — Photo

Lee has played a key role in Park’s coaching board since his first days in Việt Nam. He will be assisted by coach Ngô Tuấn Vinh, goalkeeping coach Nguyễn Đức Cảnh and fitness trainer Cedric Roger.

The 32 players selected will practise alongside the national team in Hà Nội. They will fly to Dubai on March 20. 

Việt Nam will play Iraq on March 26 and Croatia three days later. —



Vietnam wins 3 gold medals at Aerobic Gymnastics Asian Championship



Vietnamese gymnasts grabbed three gold medals, three silvers, and a bronze at the eighth Aerobic Gymnastics Asian Championship held in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia from September 13 to 17.

The three gold medals included one Tran Ha Vi earned in the women’s singles event.

The remaining two gold medals were secured in the doubles event by Le Hoang Phong and Tran Ngoc Thuy Vi and in the group category by Le Hoang Phong, Tran Ngoc Thuy Vi, Nguyen Che Thanh, Vuong Hoai An, and Nguyen Viet Anh.

The accomplishment placed the Vietnamese aerobics team at the top of the medal standings for the adult age group as the tournament concluded on Sunday.

Fourteen Asian countries and territories joined the competition.

Mongolia, Cambodia, and Taiwan followed closely behind Vietnam, with each of them securing one gold medal.

Simultaneously, the Vietnamese youth aerobics team also achieved three silver medals and two bronzes in the 15-17-year-old categories at the tournament.

The silver medals went to Nguyen Tat Viet in boys’ singles, Phan Thi Uyen Nhi in girls’ singles, and Phan Thi Uyen Nhi, Nguyen Hoang Gia Han, and Nguyen Duong Quynh in the trio event. 

The bronze medals were awarded to Nguyen Tat Viet and Nguyen Phuong Anh in doubles and Nguyen Thi Phuong, Nguyen Thi Phuong, and Nguyen Ngoc Bao Han in the group category.

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Man United lose again, Guardiola back to see City comeback win



MANCHESTER, England – Manchester United slumped to a third Premier League loss of the season at home to Brighton & Hove Albion on Saturday as Pep Guardiola returned to see Manchester City side’s 3-1 comeback win at West Ham United.

Fightbacks were the order of the day as Liverpool recovered from falling behind to win 3-1 at Wolverhampton Wanderers in the early kickoff and two goals deep into stoppage time earned Tottenham Hotspur a 2-1 win over Sheffield United.

After another tumultuous week off the pitch for Manchester United, the club needed the players to lift their supporters.

Brighton ran out comfortable 3-1 winners, however, to ensure United suffered three defeats in the first five matches of a league campaign for the first time since 1989-90, leaving them languishing 13th in the table.

United fell behind in the 20th minute when Danny Welbeck slotted home against his former club when left unmarked in the penalty area.

Big-money signing Rasmus Hojlund, on his full debut, thought he had levelled before the break, but the ball was adjudged to be out of play when Marcus Rashford pulled the ball back to the Danish striker.

Brighton capitalised on that VAR reprieve as fine goals from Pascal Gross early in the second half and a Joao Pedro strike brought groans of dismay all around Old Trafford.

Substitute Hannibal Mejbri did get one back for the hosts with 18 minutes left but Brighton held on comfortably to move up to third on 12 points.

“Definitely that (losing three from five for the first time in Premier League history) is something that bothers me, but also I have to seen the way we play,” coach Erik ten Hag said.

“It is about character, we have to see how strong we are, stick together. We have to be very disappointed and annoyed at ourselves. We will turn this. There is a demand on us.”

Never-say-die City

Having recovered from back surgery, Guardiola would have been pleased with the fighting spirit of his team at London Stadium.

New signing Jeremy Doku, Bernardo Silva and Erling Haaland scored second-half goals to cancel out James Ward-Prowse’s strike and maintain City’s perfect record this season. They top the standings, two points ahead of Liverpool and three clear of Brighton.

City have now started a league campaign with five consecutive victories for the fifth time in their history, although their highest finish in any of those campaigns was third.

“I’d prefer to be here than to do a surgery that’s for sure,” Guardiola told the BBC.

“All game we played a fantastic game. Even when we were losing against at half-time. We were efficient, we were patient in the second-half. It was a big win after the international break. The team showed good spirit to survive.”

Wolves dominated the first half at Molineux against an unusually sluggish Liverpool, Hwang Hee-chan stroking in a seventh-minute goal and Wolves missing other chances.

Liverpool came out transformed in the second half, however, drawing level when Mohamed Salah set up fellow striker Cody Gakpo for a tap-in.

Wearing the captain’s armband on his 200th Premier League appearance, Andy Robertson slid in Liverpool’s second from another Salah pass in the 85th minute and they added a third in stoppage time.

There were further scenes of jubilation at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

Tottenham were heading for their first Premier League defeat under Ange Postecoglou as they trailed to Gustavo Hamer’s goal against the run of play in the 75th minute.

But substitute Richarlison ended his goal drought with the equaliser in the eighth of 12 minutes added on and set up Dejan Kulusevski for the winner as Tottenham made it four wins in a row and 13 points from 15 — their best start to a top-flight season since 1965-66.

Late goals also helped Aston Villa storm back to beat Crystal Palace 3-1, Fulham secured a 1-0 victory over Luton Town, and Newcastle United move up to 11th with a 1-0 home win over Brentford, their first win in four league games.


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S.Korean football club bids farewell to Vietnamese striker Nguyen Van Toan



Seoul E-Land Football Club, currently playing in K-League 2, or the men’s second-highest division of the South Korean football league system, made an announcement bidding farewell to Vietnamese forward Nguyen Van Toan on Friday evening, prematurely ending his contract.

In a message in Korean on their verified Facebook page, Seoul E-Land stated that Toan ended his services at the football club and will be transferring to a different team in Vietnam.

“I felt extremely anxious when I first ventured overseas. I want to express my gratitude to the team, my fellow players, and all the individuals who treated me like family. It’s disheartening to bid farewell. But I must make a decision as a player,” the club cited the 1996-born striker.

Toan left Vietnam’s Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) FC, where he had built his professional career after his training years, to move to Seoul E-Land in January on a two-year contract.

At Seoul E-Land Club, Toan played a total of 388 minutes across nine appearances, four of which were starts, with no goals or assists recorded.

His last appearance for the South Korean team was on June 4. 

Following that, he sustained an injury and was sidelined for an extended period until his return to the Vietnamese national team for preparations leading up to the friendly match against Palestine in Vietnam on September 11 and contributed to the 2-0 win that day.

According to the announcement from Seoul E-Land Club, the 1996-born striker is currently in active negotiations with Nam Dinh Football Club in preparation for the 2023-24 V. League 1 season. 

Multiple sources suggest a strong likelihood that Toan will rejoin Nam Dinh in the top-tier V. League 1 on a lucrative three-year contract.

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