HANOI, Sept 24 (Bernama) -- Vietnam’s national football coach Park Hang Seo believes Malaysia has improved greatly recently, and his team needs luck on their side when the two teams meet in the next 2020 World Cup qualifier.
Vietnam will host Malaysia in the second match of the qualifying round on Oct 10 in Hanoi, reported VNA.
The hosts have one point after their opening game draw with Thailand this month and sit fourth from five teams of Group G. Malaysia is one step above with one win and one loss.
It will be the first meeting of the two sides since Vietnam beat Malaysia 3-2 in the final of the AFF Cup last December.
Park and his assistants watched Malaysian’s recent games and all agree they were stronger now than before.
"My assistant Lee Young Jin came to see their match against the UAE last month and I myself watch a clip of that match,” said Park through an interpreter.
“I saw some changes in the team and recognised their front line is really sharp, much more than in the AFF Cup."
Park believes playing against Malaysia would not be easy.
"They have also watched us a lot, learned our strong points and found ways to limit us,” he added.
“It is impossible to change all of our tactics now but we should level up our 'weapons' that they already know and this change would push them in disorder (during the game).
“At the same time, we will find the Malaysian weak points and attack on that. Currently, we are discussing our tactics."
To prepare for the match, Park called 32 players and they began practising on Monday at the VFF's Youth Football Training Centre. Among familiar faces, Park added four new faces, defender A Hoang (Hoang Anh Gia Lai), midfielder Vo Huy Toan (SHB Da Nang), and strikers Nguyen Viet Phong (Viettel) and Mac Hong Quan (Quang Ninh).
Striker Nguyen Cong Phuong, defender Doan Van Hau and goalkeeper Dang Van Lam are still busy with their clubs abroad and will join later.