Vietnam AFC Asian Cup

Vietnam closer to top 100 in FIFA rankings following Jordan draw

Vietnam missed out the Group C top spot after tying Jordan 1-1 in the last group stage match of the 2019 Asian Cup qualification on Tuesday at the King Abdullah II Stadium.

The visitors silenced thousands of local fans when striker Nguyen Anh Duc opened the scoring in the 24th minute from Pham Xuan Manh’s low cross.

Vietnam could have notched a second goal just five minutes later as Nguyen Cong Phuong made a powerful long-distance finish that beat all Jordanian players and the keeper but was denied by the crossbar.

However, The Golden Stars were dealt a blow five minutes before halftime when goalkeeper Dang Van Lam was unable to play due to a hip injury and had to be replaced by Nguyen Tuan Manh, who produced at least two incredible saves afterward.

As the Vietnamese’s physical strength was eroded due to long hour flight and pressure from the opponents, Jordan showed plenty of attacking intent in the second half.

Their efforts were paid off when Abu Amara unleashed a speculative 25-yard effort to the high corner of keeper Manh to earn the equalizer for the hosts with 20 minutes remaining.

With this draw, Park Hang-seo’s side wrapped up their 2019 Asian Cup qualification campaign in second place of Group C with ten points, two points behind the table leaders Jordan.

Vietnam are currently ranked at the 113th spot in the FIFA world rankings and the draw with Jordan could take them as high as 103, something which could immensely help them plot into the third seed in the draw for the Asian Cup.

The draw for the final stage of the 2019 AFC Asian Cup is scheduled to be held on May 4 in Dubai.