Park wants to leave national set-up only after reaching AFF Cup final

January 08, 2023 - 13:59
"It is an important game. My contract will end by the end of this tournament. If I lose tomorrow, it would be my final match with Viêt Nam, otherwise, I will have two more to go," said coach Park.


Striker Nguyễn Tiến Linh practises for the semi-final match. He is 200 per cent ready to beat Indonesia on January 9 in Hà Nội. Photo of VFF

HÀ NỘI — Coach Park Hang-seo said the AFF Cup's semi-final second-leg against Indonesia was crucial to him, given that it may be his last game at the held of the Vietnamese national football team.

"It is an important game. My contract will end by the end of this tournament. If I lose tomorrow, it would be my final match with Viêt Nam, otherwise, I will have two more to go," said Park at the press briefing on Sunday in Hà Nội.

"We will have a really good match so that none regrets about it later."

Việt Nam tied host Indonesia 0-0 at the Gelora Bung Karno last Friday. The two-time champions need a win on home turf today to secure a berth in the final match.

Indonesia have a slight advantage going into the game as a scoring draw would see them advance on away goals at Mỹ Đình Stadium.

Park said that in their two years under Shin Tae Yong, also a South Korean, Indonesia grew and are much stronger. However, Park still maintained his opinion that Việt Nam are the stronger team.

"I don't often evaluate other teams but they have indeed been improved. But I want to see what Shin said (Indonesia were at the same level as Việt Nam) in the game's result. If we lose tomorrow I will admit his opinion, otherwise please don't speak anymore," said Park.

Striker Nguyễn Tiến Linh also took part in the briefing. He was one of two Vietnamese players who needed intravenous fluid therapy because of exhaustion after returning to Hà Nội on Saturday.

"It was no problem for me. It was to help me recover well. I am fine and ready 200 per cent for tomorrow," said Linh.

He said the second leg match was really important for the host side. The first leg was tough and the journey back home was long and tiring. But playing on home soil means they will have strong support.

On the visiting side, Shin confirmed that he wanted a win and would not play for a draw.

"Both two teams want a win. I do not want a draw or extra time. I want to end the game after 90 minutes," said Shin.

"Việt Nam are a quality team. Both Việt Nam and Indonesia are strong, and at the same level in Southeast Asia; none is better than the other. Our advantage is that all players are determined and will do their best in the match.

"I agree that Việt Nam are well-organised, and their defenders are strong. But it does not mean that my strikers were not good. They showed good skills in the first leg match but missed threatening chances," he said.

The match between Việt Nam and Indonesia will kick off at 7.30 pm. It will be live aired on VTV channels and other social network platforms.

Việt Nam News will have a live blog on our fanpage.

Suphanan Bureerat of Thailand (centre) runs the ball away from Malaysian players during their AFF Cup second semi-final first-leg match on January 7 in Kuala Lumpur. Malaysia win 1-0. Photo

In the other semi-final, striker Faisal Halim struck early in the first half to give Malaysia a slim 1-0 win over Thailand at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium on Saturday in Kuala Lumpur.

“A 1-0 win was clearly not enough, what more playing at home, but I am still happy with the result", Malaysia head coach Kim Pan Gon told The Sundaily

“It was a very tough game because Thailand are a very strong team. We tried to pressure them, but it was not easy.

“We had chances to score. The result could have been 3-0 to us and our opponents also had a few opportunities to get a goal, but the players are all human and they made mistakes. Hopefully, my players can recover quickly,” he said.

Thailand coach Alexandre Polking was left bemused over his men's failure to find the back of the net as Ekanit Panya, Bordin Phala and Teerasil Dangda were among those that missed golden opportunities.

“As a coach, I don’t like to lose like that but this is football as losing is part of the game. I never thought Thailand could dominate the game because Malaysia were different in the group stage,” he said.

In the meantime, he also believed that they could turn the tables and get a result against Malaysia next.

“It was a great result for Malaysia and the fantastic crowd here, but we also have amazing fans. I am pretty sure they will push us to try and put the ball at the back of the net,” he said.

On Tuesday, Malaysia will travel to Bangkok for the second leg at the Thammasat Stadium. VNS