U-23s fine tuned for SEA Games clash
HCM CITY — The Vietnamese U-23 football team have wrapped up their final training camp for next month's SEA Games in Indonesia.
"The team have showed progress after the HCM City international football tournament and Viet Nam Football Federation Cup international football tournament in Ha Noi," German coach Falko Goetz told the media in HCM City on Friday.
But there are a few worries with key players Nguyen Thanh Long Giang, and Nguyen Dinh Tung picking up minor injuries at the camp.
"I am working to make sure that all the players are at their peak in Indonesia, fit and focused," the former German national defender said.
Viet Nam play the Philippines in their first match in group B on November 3. They then take on Myanmar on the 5th, Timor Leste on the 9th, Brunei on the 11th, and Laos on the 14th.
The Philippines, who have many players of foreign origin like Spanish defender Carlos Alberto de Murga, Germans Roland Mueller and Manny Ott, and Belgian Jeffrey Christaens, are expected to be tough opponents.
"I cannot say anything about the other teams in the group, but I would like to play a strong team in the opening game because it will force players to play with concentration and determination," he said.
The two top teams in each group will qualify for the semifinals, with Viet Nam, the Philippines, and Myanmar the favourites in their group.
The battle for the semifinals is expected to be very fierce in group A which has hosts Indonesia, defending champion Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore.
The semifinals will be on November 19 and the final on the 21st, a day before the closing ceremony — VNS