NAYPYITAW (11 Dec 2013) – Vietnam coach Hoang Van Phuc is maintaining a strong front despite conceding his first defeat in Group A last night to Singapore.
Vietnam, the losing semi-finalists two years ago, went down to a solitary strike from Singapore striker Sahil Suhami just before the end of the first half.
“The important thing was that we created a lot of chances,” said Van Phuc (pix). “We had more than a handful of chances in the first half and in the second, we also pressed them hard. It was just unfortunate that we could not score. They had that one opportunity and they put it away.
“But I’m still confident as we have two more matches to play for.”
While two days earlier Vietnam strolled to a 7-0 thrashing of Brunei, this time round however, the Singapore side was more disciplined in defence as they denied the relentless onslaught from the trio of Le Van Thang, Vu Minh Tuan and Ha Minh Tuan.
Even the several substitutions in the second half, failed to produce the desired equalizer as Singapore stood firm for their first three points of the competition.
As things stand, with Singapore leading the standings to be followed closely by Vietnam and Malaysia, winning the two tickets to the next round is anybody’s guess. But do not discount Laos just yet as after the positive showing from their first match when they held Singapore to a 1-1 draw, anything can happen.
And in football, it just might.