Goalkeeper Cao Văn Bình clears the ball during the bronze-medal game of the AFF U19 Youth Championship yesterday in Jakarta. Bình saved a spot kick to help Việt Nam win 5-3 on penalties. Photo ThailandNTOFFICIAL
HÀ NỘI — Goalkeeper Cao Văn Bình was Việt Nam's hero after saving a spot kick in a penalty shootout to secure bronze in the AFF U19 Youth Championship yesterday in Jakarta, Indonesia.
Việt Nam beat arch-rivals Thailand 5-3 on penalties after the two side were deadlocked 1-1 after 90 minutes. It was the second meet between two teams after their 1-1 draw in the group stages earlier this week.
Coach Đinh Thế Nam of Việt Nam told reporters before the game that his players would improve from earlier, especially after they suffered a big 3-0 loss to Malaysia in the semi-final on July 13.
But in the opening stages of this medal play-off, it was the Thais who started on top.
Kakana Khamyok came close in just the second minute when his shot fizzed wide of the post.
Bình was the busier of the two keepers saving attempts by Songkhramsamut Namphueng, Panupong Wongpila and Panthamit Praphanth.
After many attempts, Thailand found the net in the 43rd minute.
Bình denied Praphanth from close range but the ball bounced to Sittha Boonlha who made no mistake.
Việt Nam's midfielder Nguyễn Đức Việt and Thailand's Panthamit Praphanth vie for the ball during their third-place match. — Photo ThailandNTOFFICIAL
The interval time came at a good time for Việt Nam giving coach Nam the chance to regroup.
Eight minutes after the break, the game was all square.
Forward Nguyễn Quốc Việt beat the off-side trap and took the ball into the box lobbing over the keeper.
Việt led the scoring chart with five goals, one more than Lao striker Peeter Phanthavong who scored four prior to his team's final match against Malaysia.
Both coach Nam and Thai manager Salvador Valero Garcia made changes in the second half to strengthen their line-ups and replace injured players.
But the substitutions failed to find a winning goal and the match went to penalties.
While all Vietnamese players were successful from the spot, Thai skipper Chanapach Buaphan's was denied by Bình.
The Vietnamese players will have several days rest before they train in preparation for the Asian U20 Championship qualification in September.
There are 10 groups, 10 best teams and five second-placed will qualify for the finals in Uzbekistan. The Uzbek event is the qualifier of the FIFA U20 World Cup 2023.
Việt Nam are in Group F with Hong Kong, Timor Leste and host Indonesia.
The squad will take part in a two-week training camp in Japan where they will also have several friendlies with local teams. VNS