Wednesday , October 4 2023

Vietnam off to great start at Women’s AFF Cup

Despite not fielding the strongest squad, Vietnam still easily defeated Cambodia 3-0 in the opening game of group B at the 2022 Women’s AFF Cup on Thursday night.

Coach Mai Duc Chung put many key players on the bench although there were already several missing due to injury. The rain, plus the artificial grass at Binan Stadium in the Philippines, affected the style of play of Vietnam.

At the start, the team tried to keep possession by long passes. This tactic was proved to be effective when in the 20th minute, one of the passes found Ngan Thi Van Su at the back of Cambodia’s defense and she curled it in with the outside of her foot to open the scoring.

Four minutes later, Vietnam almost conceded when keeper Khong Thi Hang couldn’t control a simple pass and let the ball go past her and hit the post. Fortunately, no Cambodia player was there to tap it in.

When the game hit the half-hour mark, Pham Hai Yen sprinted past Cambodia keeper and was fouled inside the box. The referee gave Vietnam a penalty and Yen successfully convert it to double the lead for Vietnam.

In the first additional minute of the first half, Yen passed a through ball to Nguyen Thi Thanh Nha, who used her pace to get past Cambodia defenders before beating the keeper one on one.

In the second half, Vietnam still got the game in their control but couldn’t create many chances as Cambodia decided to play tougher in defense. Coach Chung put a few key players on when it was 20 minutes left, but no more goals were scored and Vietnam settled for the 3-0 win.

The stats showed Vietnam’s domination with possession of 69 percent, 16 shots (compared to Cambodia’s four).

The 2022 Women’s AFF Championship is hosted in Manila, Philippines from July 4 to 17. Vietnam are the defending champions and this year they are in the same group as Myanmar, Timor Leste, Cambodia and Laos.

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