Monday , June 17 2024

Vietnam coach keeps faith in players after loss

Men’s football coach Philippe Troussier said he still has faith in his team’s potential after Vietnam’s disappointing last-minute loss to Indonesia at the SEA Games semifinals Saturday.

“Our target was to win the game, so the result disappointed us,” Troussier said after the match on Olympic Stadium in Cambodia.

“But the players showed their fighting spirit at difficult moments. They found goals by following tactics. We conceded in the last minute due to our lack of experience making decisions at crucial moments.”

Coach Troussier remained positive and optimistic.

“I’m proud of my players,” he said. “They’ve given their best. I’ve asked the squad to change their mindset. This tournament showed their progress. We played well against a very strong Indonesia.”

Vietnam won their previous three SEA Games encounters against Indonesia under previous coach Park Hang-seo.

However, in this tournament, despite being defending champion, Vietnam were in a different state.

The team under new coach Troussier is stacked with newer young players without much experience at big clubs.

Indonesia was the only team to win all group stage matches at this year’s SEA Games.

They began the semifinal game confidently and took the lead by taking full advantage of mistakes made by the Vietnamese defense during two powerful throw-ins by Pratama Arhan.

Vietnam equalized thanks to a header by Nguyen Van Tung and an Indonesia’s own goal. The team got an advantage when Arhan received a second yellow card and was sent off in the 60th minute. However, Vietnam’s players were impatient and wasted several chances only to lose the match from a quick Indonesian counter-attack in the sixth additional minute.

“After Indonesia received the red card, we had many opportunities to finish the match. But the players made the wrong decision at the wrong time,” Troussier said. “However, I haven’t lost faith in my players. They have worked very hard and executed the tactics well. I don’t blame anyone. This is football, sometimes we win, sometimes we lose. I believe the players can do better in the future.”

This SEA Games has been different from the last two editions as the teams are no longer allowed to use overage players. Troussier said he cannot say if the result would have been different with the use of overage players, but it is clear they made a big difference at last year’s SEA Games.

“If we had three overage players, plus Bui Hoang Viet Anh and Nguyen Thanh Binh, that means we would have had five national team players,” Troussier said.

“But I considered this tournament as an opportunity for U22 players to prove their worth. I can say this generation has great potential despite critics saying they don’t. This generation doesn’t have many outstanding individuals, but I think with proper guidance, they can have a better future,” the coach added.

SEA Games 32 is not over for U22 Vietnam as they still have the bronze medal match on Tuesday.

Việt Nam 2-3 Indonesia

SEA Games 32 semifinal: Vietnam 2-3 Indonesia

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