Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
Speaking at a post-match press brief following the semi-final with the hosts, Chung showed his satisfaction with the results and congratulated the whole team for the feat.
Reigning champions Vietnam defeated the Filipinos 2-0, thanks to the two goals in the second half from Thai Thi Thao and Tuyet Dung. The victory helped Chung’s side win the ticket to play in the finals against arch-rivals Thailand, who beat Myanmar 1-0 in the other semis on the same day.
“My side played well and deserved to win. I congratulate the whole team on this victory, even though it was very hard to progress. In the first half, we had a lot of opportunities that we missed, if we had scored the game would have been easier for us. Football is like that,” the 1951-born strategist said.
Chung also applauded the efforts of the host players: “The Philippines played very resiliently. They are very tall and physically fit. Although my team overwhelmed in ball possession, the opponents played long balls and caused a lot of trouble for us. This is also a limitation of the Vietnamese women’s team.”
The 68-year-old coach pointed out the positions which he was most satisfied: “In today’s match I am most satisfied with the goalkeeper. The opponents played a lot of long balls but Kim Thanh was firmly to support the defensive line. Central defender Chuong Thi Kieu also played very well. Both are very good in form.”
Chung admitted that the team’s mentality was tense as they had to play the hosts, with the hot weather even in the evening also having caused trouble. “I think the physical issue also needs to be improved. Luckily, none of our players have been injured”, he added.
In response to the question about the upcoming final, which is slated for December 8, Chung said: “I think the Thai team are also tired after the semi-final. They won 1-0 over Myanmar and I think that that match was also very tense and the players lost much of their strength. The same goes for the Vietnamese women’s team. I will do everything for the players to recover well.”
“The chances are equally divided between both teams. In football, we cannot say anything in advance, but the Vietnamese team always enter their games with the utmost determination,” the Hanoian affirmed.
He also expressed his sincere thanks to the fans who flocked to the Binan Football Stadium yesterday evening to cheer on the team: “Obviously the cheering of the crowd with the Vietnamese flag made us very happy. Never before have the Vietnamese women’s team competed with such atmosphere as today, helping us to overcome fatigue to make an outstanding match. Of course, there were players who had cramps, but they were highly determined to overcome fatigue thanks to the cheers of the Vietnamese fans on the stands.”
After the impressive win, the team have been rewarded VND1.5 billion from the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF), plus VND1 billion from Head of women’s football team, Pham Thanh Hung. In total, plus the reward of VND2 billion after the end of the group stage, the women’s team have received VND4 billion in total.
Earlier the same day, Vietnam’s U22s advanced to the semi-finals of the 30th SEA Games men’s football after making a remarkable comeback 2-2 draw against Thailand.
After hearing good news from both men’s and women’s team, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc congratulated and praised the performance of both teams, despite being busy on a visit to Japan.
Through VFF Standing Vice Chairman Tran Quoc Tuan, Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc praised the excellent fighting spirit of the Vietnam U22 players when they turned the situation from conceding two goals to being level 2-2, knocking Thailand U22s out of the race to win a ticket to the semi-finals as Group B winners.
Immediately after the feat of Vietnam U22s, the Vietnamese women’s team also excellently defeated hosts Philippines in the semi-finals to progress to the finals for the gold medal. Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc wished the two teams will remain focused and determined to achieve the best results at this year’s SEA Games.