Việt Nam to be focused against Uzbekistan in Asian U23s

April 23, 2024 - 08:39
As both teams have already qualified for the quarter-finals after two wins each, the result of the game will only decide the first-placed team of Group D.


Vietnamese players practise on April 22. They will play Uzbekistan on April 23 for the top place of Group D. Photo courtesy of VFF

HÀ NỘI - Việt Nam will bring its highest determination into play in the last group match against Uzbekistan at the AFC U23 Asian Cup on April 23 in Doha, Qatar.

As both teams have already qualified for the quarter-finals after two wins each, the result of the game will only decide the first-placed team of Group D.

However, coach Hoàng Anh Tuấn of Việt Nam did not want his players to rest.

Tuấn said it was still an important match for Việt Nam. Players must be focused and play as well as possible, because it was a chance for them to learn, sharpen their skills and improve for the future.

His players clearly absorbed his opinion.

"Currently, most of us are in good condition. Some injured players are in progress so that they could get back to matches," said striker Nguyễn Văn Trường.

"To have good results at this competition requires the whole team's effort. None could do it individually. I myself also have to deliver my best in all games.

"We will have to concentrate, having no single second of distraction. We will play with highest determination and never give up."

His midfielder teammate Võ Hoàng Minh Khoa agreed and said a good score against Uzbekistan would help Việt Nam have a little advantage in the quarter-finals.

In the upcoming match, coach Tuấn will not have his good defender Hồ Văn Cường who has received two bookings and will be sidelined. His talented striker Nguyễn Đình Bắc, who suffered an injury just minutes into the first match, has nearly recovered but his chance to play is not confirmed yet.

Uzbekistan on April 20 defeated Kuwait 5-0 and are temporarily on top of the group.

Uzbekistan players celebrate their goal during the 5-0 win over Kuwait on April 20. -- Photo of AFC

After the win coach Timur Kapadze said Việt Nam were a strong team, when asked about his next match.

"Việt Nam also have six points. Playing against a strong team means we must have our best preparation. We look for a win against Việt Nam first, not thinking about quarter-final opponent.

"Uzbekistan are ready for the game and my players also show their determination. I see it from them. No matter what opponent we face, our goal is still a victory," he said.

Uzbekistan will be strengthened with two players, Abdukodir Khusanov and Abbosbek Fayzullaev, who are playing in Europe. They joined the team on April 22's training session.

Defender Khusanov is competing for Lens in the Ligue 1. He played 13 matches for the club, nine in the local league and two each at the Champions League and Europa League.

Fayzullaev is of CSKA Moskva. The attacking midfielder who also plays as a winger has scored four goals and 11 assists in 26 matches for his club.

Việt Nam played Uzbekistan in the 2018 edition's final. Uzbekistan won 2-1 in the last minute to take the trophy, while Việt Nam's silver was the team's best result in history. VNS