Vietnam’s U20 team are gearing up for their last group-stage game against their formidable Iranian opponents at the 2023 AFC U20 Asian Cup in Uzbekistan on Tuesday afternoon, expressing their desire to avoid a tie in this crucial match.
The clash will be shown live on the FPT Play platform at 5:00 pm (Vietnam time).
The Vietnamese team understand that a tie may not be enough for them to advance to the next stage of the tournament.
“In a youth league, a team can play well in one game but not in another,” said the Vietnamese team’s head coach Hoang Anh Tuan following a training session before Tuesday’s game.
“In general, Iran are the strongest team in the group,” he said, hailing the four-time champions in 1973, 1974, 1975, and 1976.
“If Vietnam U20s stumble against Iran, the previous two wins will become meaningless.”
Vietnam secured an unexpected 1-0 win over Australia in the opening game of Group B last Wednesday and a breathtaking 2-1 victory over Qatar in their second match on Saturday.
“However, we do not want to tie with Iran,” Tuan said.
“We’ve learned that playing a match with just a draw target in mind is extremely dangerous.”
Therefore, they are fully focused on giving their best performance and putting in a solid effort on the field.
The squad have been training well and preparing diligently for the game.
They are confident that they can come out on top if they execute their defensive game plan effectively.
Vietnam, who are leading Group B with six points, still need at least one point to finish at the top of the standings.
Australia and Iran follow in second and third with the same three points, respectively, and Qatar sit rock-bottom with zero points.
In case of a loss to Iran, Tuan’s boys can still qualify for the quarterfinals unless Australia defeat Qatar in another match that takes place at the same time.
The 2023 AFC U20 Asian Cup kicked off in Uzbekistan on March 1 and is scheduled to last until March 18.
There are 16 teams competing in four groups in the tournament.
The top four teams of the tourney will qualify for the 2023 FIFA U20 World Cup in Indonesia in May-June this year as the AFC representatives besides Indonesia, who have automatically qualified as hosts.
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