Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Coach Nguyễn Hữu Thắng will continue in his position after the unexpected loss at the ASEAN Football Federation Suzuki Cup, and will focus on three major tournaments in 2017, the Việt Nam Football Federation (VFF) has announced.
Thắng was set to enter the regional tournament’s final, but his team was stopped at the semi-final, losing 3-4 to Indonesia after a two-leg match.
In a recent meeting in Hà Nội between VFF, Thắng and his assistants, it was reported that a review took place of the entire process.
VFF leaders and members of the National Coaches Council praised the efforts of the team’s coaching board and players, but pointed out five main reasons resulting in the defeat.
Thắng said he took full responsibility for the failure and was ready to be replaced.
However, VFF’s General Secretary Lê Hoài Anh said it was not time for a resignation and the national football governing body still needed Thắng.
Thắng signed a two-year contract with VFF in March.
Next year, Việt Nam will take part in the 2019 Asian Cup’s final qualification, 2018 Asian U23 Football Championship’s qualifier and, most important, the Southeast Asian Games.
VFF and Thắng agreed that the national team should be rejuvenated and strict discipline must be applied so that they could be well prepared for competitions in the future.
Thắng starts the new procedures by watching the International U21 Football Tournament, which began yesterday in HCM City, to search for new players for his team.
New players will take the place of those who left, including striker Lê Công Vinh, midfielder Phạm Thành Lương and defender Trương Đình Luật, who retired from the national team last week.
From his side, Thắng asked VFF to hire a well-qualified sport doctor, a foreigner if possible, who could care for players’ injuries and supervise their recoveries.
General Secretary Anh agreed with this proposal.
“VFF will try its best to meet the proper demand, which will ease our concerns about the health of players,” Anh said.
Thắng also asked VFF to raise awareness among players about violence in local tournaments. For those who break the new rules, strict fines should be issued.
“VFF should invite experts here to talk to players and let them clearly understand football rules, so we can limit violent or bad behaviour on the field,” said Thắng.
It was his experience, after two Vietnamese players were sent off during the AFF Cup, while others avoided fines because referees did not see their possible violations. Việt Nam received the highest number of red cards at the Cup.
Their absence strongly affected the team’s performance, which stopped them at the semi-finals round, while they had targeted to play in the final.
“VFF has agreed to change the rule. Heavier fines will be applied for violent activities and bad reactions against referees in the games. Football theory and rules will be mandatory subjects for any national team members,” said General Secretary Anh.
Anh noted that these activities aimed to improve players’ attitudes and professionalism. They were also developed to protect the interest of both players and national teams. — VNS