Coach Park Hang-seo hopes that the referee will take a second look at the game between Vietnam and Thailand in the semifinal’s first leg of AFF Cup Thursday.
“I don’t want to talk about the referee. I just hope that he will rewatch the game if he has time. It’s hard to comment on the referee’s decisions. I only have one request to the organizers. VAR is really popular nowadays and we should bring it to this tournament. Hopefully, it will be used in the next tournament to help the referees make the right decisions,” Park said in the post-match press conference on Thursday.
In this game, Qatar referee Saoud Ali Al-Adba has made many controversial decisions, most of which are against Vietnam. When keeper Chatchai Bootprom went out of the box and fouled Nguyen Van Toan to prevent a dangerous attack, the referee only gave him a yellow instead of red.
In the second half, the referee awarded Thailand a penalty after a normal play by defender Do Duy Manh. He also refused Vietnam’s clear penalty in the dying minutes although a Thailand player made the contact with the ball with his hand.
“Vietnam lost 0-2, but the players have tried their best. I only rue when we conceded the first goal because we made it easier for them. Vu Van Thanh and Nguyen Phong Hong Duy have completed their role. Although they make mistakes sometimes, that’s football,” Park defended defenders Thanh and Duy, who were criticized for their poor display against Thailand.
Vietnam still have the second leg on Sunday to level the score against Thailand and Park believes in the team.
“The two-goal lead can be leveled at any time. I will discuss with the players and make the plan for the second leg. Vietnam have enough strength to get the game back to the start,” Park said.
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