Vietnam has earned a berth in the of the AFC U23 Championship finals to be held in China next year as one of five best second placed teams of the qualifying round.
Despite a fantastic goal from favourite striker Nguyen Cong Phuong, Vietnam U22 suffered a 2-1 defeat to the South Korea in the final Group I qualifying match on Sunday.
In the post-match conference, Phuong’s performance has earned high praise from the head coach of Korea U22 Jeong Jeong Yong.
“I have warned my team about the danger from Cong Phuong. However, he is indeed too dangerous. Although our defenders played quite well, we still had to concede a goal due to Phuong’s excellent efforts,” Jeong said, as quoted by VnExpress.
On the other hand, the Korean coach also provided some advice to Nguyen Xuan Truong, who is currently playing as a central midfielder to K-League side Gangwon FC.
“Apparently, Truong owns the excellent skills, mindset, and long-passing ability. However, he needs to improve his strength and pressing ability to compete with Korean football players,” he added.
Topping the table helps the Young Taegeuk Warrior earn a straight ticket to the final tournament in China next year. Vietnam U22, as one the six best runners-up, also qualify for the final round.