Vietnam won 1-0 against Thailand, topped group C and advanced to the semifinals of the 2022 AFF U23 Youth Championship Tuesday night.
Despite having only 16 players left in the squad due to Covid-19 cases, Vietnam still scored a victory against Thailand, who were not affected. Three of the six additional players that just arrived in Cambodia six hours before the game were in the lineup.
Vietnam didn’t have a great start as Thailand pushed forward to seek the opener. But they gradually played better and got the situation under control from the 20th minute.
Nine minutes later, the goal came to Vietnam from an individual effort of Nguyen Trung Thanh. From a corner in the right flank, the young midfielder decided not to make a cross inside the box but a direct shot. The ball curled unexpectedly and Thailand keeper couldn’t save it despite getting his hand on it.
At the end of the first half, Thailand got the best chance to equalize. Kroekphon Abram sprinted down the right flank and passed it inside for Teerasak Poeiphimal, who was unmarked and really comfortable in a position to finish. However, his shot went over the bar.
In the second half, Thailand couldn’t create enough pressure to find a goal. The considerable chances only came to them in the last 10 minutes, but their shots couldn’t beat keeper Trinh Xuan Hoang.
As the leader of group C, Vietnam will face group A leader Timor Leste in the semifinals on Feb. 24.
Losing 0-1, Thailand still advanced to the semifinals as the best second-placed team and they will play group B leader Laos in the semifinals.
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