Coach Branko Ivankovic complimented the performance of Vietnam players although they lost 0-1 to Oman in the World Cup qualifier in Hanoi Thursday night.
“Vietnam were tougher and more energetic compared to the last encounter. We played well in the first half. In the second half, we scored but to be honest, Vietnam played better. Nevertheless, only the final result matters. It’s another win for us,” Ivankovic said.
Oman played comfortably with a slow pace in the first half but still put pressure on Vietnam. In the second half, Vietnam accelerated and pushed forward with many chances created from set-pieces. But while the home team couldn’t convert any opportunity, Oman found the goal from a corner in the 65th minute with a header from Khalid Al-Hajri.
“Set pieces are very important. We have practiced a lot for this situation. Of course, Oman also faced trouble from Vietnam’s set pieces,” he said.
In the first leg last October, Vietnam were also defeated by Oman. They scored first but suffered a final 1-3 loss.
Thursday’s was Vietnam’s eighth defeat in nine matches. But Ivankovic still spent some nice words for Vietnam.
“Vietnam are the youngest team in this group. They have many young and talented players, so I think they have a bright future,” Ivankovic added.
Oman have no chance left to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. The victory secured their fourth position in the group, after Japan, Saudi Arabia who both have qualified, and Australia.
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