Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Nguyễn Minh Trí scored a hat-trick to help world No 42 Việt Nam beat world No 24 Guatemala 4-2 in their opening game at the FIFA Futsal World Cup.
The Vietnamese team played their Group C match in Colombia on September 12.
“It is a historical match for the Việt Nam futsal team because it is the first time the country is taking part in the World Cup tournament,” Việt Nam coach Bruno Garcia said.
“We prepared very carefully for this game. I am very satisfied with my players, who were confident and followed all the tactics of the training board. Today, my team played very well and the result proved that. There were several errors which led to Guatemala scoring goals, but our players overcame this immense pressure to win the match,” he said.
“I’d like to dedicate this win to Vietnamese fans. I know that the match took place early this morning (Hà Nội time), but many fans still encouraged the Việt Nam team via television. We will try our best in the coming matches,” Garcia added.
Việt Nam proved themselves to be a quick and skilled team from the outset, taking charge of the game and providing no room to the Guatemalans to settle.
In the 19th minute, Trí scored Việt Nam’s first-ever goal at a FIFA tournament with his left foot from a long pass by Ngọc Sơn.
After the break, Guatemala played an attacking game continuously to level the score, but their strikers struggled to break through Việt Nam’s defense line.
In the 24th minute, Wanderley Ruiz scored a goal to make the scores even for the CONCACAF side.
Trí, however, displayed an excellent performance, scoring two more goals for Việt Nam in the 27th and 28th minutes, raising the score to 3-1.
Patricio Ruiz narrowed the gap to 3-2 for Guatemala in the 30th minute.
In the last minutes of the match, Guatemala, playing in their fourth successive tournament, created several chances to score but were unable to do so. Meanwhile, Việt Nam played outstandingly to prevent their opponents from scoring.
In the 39th minute, Edgar Santizo made an error in the penalty area and Việt Nam scored from a penalty kick. In the final moments of the game, Trần Văn Vũ didn’t miss his chance and sealed the contest 4-2.
In the other match in the same group, world No 4 Italy defeated No 11 Paraguay 4-2.
Việt Nam and Italy are leading Group C with three points each, followed by Guatemala and Paraguay with zero points.
Việt Nam, who hope to enter the last-16 round, will face Paraguay next up on Wednesday, while Guatemala play European heavyweights Italy.
The World Cup has attracted the participation of 24 teams, divided into six groups, vying for the cup. Only the two top teams of each group and the four best third-placed squads will advance to the second stage. — VNS