Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Hoàng Anh Gia Lai FC are at the bottom of the V.League, however they have contributed nine players to the national U22 team list, which was released on January 23.
They are to play a friendly match versus Malaysia on February 7.
Coach Nguyễn Hữu Thắng has called up one goalkeeper, three defenders, four midfielders and one striker, all key members of their club, which have only one point after four matches.
Key midfielder Nguyễn Tuấn Anh failed to make the list due to injury, while Gangwon FC’s Lương Xuân Trường was not allowed to join due to commitments with his club in the South Korean league.
There are also four players from reigning champions Hà Nội who have been summoned. Sông Lam Nghệ An, FLC Thanh Hóa and SHB Đà Nẵng have also sent two players each, while Viettel, Sài Gòn, Bình Định, and Quảng Ninh Coal are sending one from each team.
The list includes those from the talented U19 team three years ago and the present U19s, who just won a berth to participate in the World Cup U20 later this year.
It satisfies the Việt Nam Football Federation’s demand of a combination of experienced and young players, rejuvenating the team for future events.
Footballers will gather together on February 2 in HCM City for training. Their match is scheduled to take place five days later at the Thống Nhất Stadium.
It is one of the activities both sides must undergo as preparation for their 2018 Asian U23 Championship’s qualification to be held in July and the 29th Southeast Asia (SEA) Games in August.
“The U22s will be summoned several times this year, so that they can better understand and connect with each other. It will help coach Thắng a lot in choosing his best squad and shaping their playing style as it is the first time he is taking charge of the team," Việt Nam Football Federation deputy president Trần Quốc Tuấn said.
Thắng will be assisted by Hoàng Anh Tuấn, head coach of the U19s, Dương Minh Ninh and goalkeeper coach Võ Văn Hạnh.
On the other side, the visiting crew will be in HCM City on February 2. According to a representative from the Malaysian football federation, these players are the core of their U23 squad at the upcoming SEA Games. — VNS