|Vietnamese players practise for the 2023 AFC U17 Asian Cup qualification. Việt Nam will play Chinese Taipei in the Group F opener on October 5. Photos courtesy of VFF
HÀ NỘI — Việt Nam will showcase high quality and target a top result at the Group F of the 2023 AFC U17 Asian Cup qualification, which will be organised in Phú Thọ Province.
Việt Nam will entertain Chinese Taipei, Nepal and Thailand on October 5, 7 and 9, respectively.
Coach Nguyễn Quốc Tuấn said all four teams were at a similar level, but Việt Nam will enjoy the advantage of playing on home turf.
"We will have plan for each rival. We want to win over all three, including archrival Thailand," said Tuấn at a briefing on October 4.
His team gathers many players who just finished second in the AFF U16 Championship final in August and Tuấn believes they gained much experience.
"We could not win the AFF title but my players know how to overcome pressure and they are growing," he said.
By his side, coach Tsai Wen-yi said Chinese Taipei was in a tough group with power house Thailand and Việt Nam. His players must show 100 per cent of their ability to earn a ticket to the finals.
He added that Taipei players lacked experience and had not been in enough international competitions to improve their skills for this tournament.
“Chinese Taipei has never advanced to the final ever. We just try to compete the best every time. However, I believe in our chances because in football everything is possible," Tsai said.
Coach Pipob On-mo of Thailand said he was impressed with the development of Việt Nam football recently. He said with strong investment in young football, Việt Nam had grabbed remarkable results.
A former Thailand national player, Pipob confirmed that his players prepared well for the qualification and would grab a slot in the finals.
|Nepalese players train at Phú Thọ Province Stadium on October 4.
Nepal manager Urijan Shrestha also appreciated Việt Nam's strength, but like other coaches, he also targeted to win the qualifier.
"I know all teams in this group are strong. We will have to face a big challenge but it will be a good experience for my players," he said.
Shrestha's players just finished second in the South Asian Football Federation U17 Championship last month in Sri Lanka.
There are 10 groups of four in this qualification. Teams will compete in a round robin format. The top ten teams and the five best second-place finishers will secure berths in the finals along with the hosts.
The finals are scheduled on May 3-20 with the destination yet to be confirmed after Bahrain withdrew hosting in June. VNS