Vietnam beat the Philippines 4-2 in an unconventional friendly in Qatar on Monday, ahead of their campaign at the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, which will kick off in UAE this week.
The match was closed to spectators and included three 30-minute sessions, instead of two 45-minute halves as usual.
The two teams wanted the game to be that way so they could field as many players as possible to prepare for the Asian Cup, which will start in UAE on Saturday.
No goal was scored in the first 30 minutes despite Vietnam’s dominating ball possession.
The Vietnamese netted a brace in the early part of the second session before the Azkals shortened the gap to 2-1 from a set piece.
Vietnam then brought on six substitutes but they conceded another goal from a long-range shot by a Philippine player.
Doan Van Hau, a Vietnamese sub, put Vietnam in the lead with a volley in the box in the 56th minute.
Coach Park Hang Seo fielded many more players in the third session.
Captain Que Ngoc Hai shot home a penalty to secure a 4-2 win for Vietnam in the 68th minute before leaving the pitch.
Park’s men will continue training in Qatar before leaving for UAE on Friday.
The Vietnamese will take on Iraq on January 8, Iran on January 12, and Yemen on January 16 in Group D.
The 2019 AFC Asian Cup will be the 17th edition of the tournament.
It runs in the United Arab Emirates from January 5 to February 1.