Coach Hoang Anh Tuan: “U23 Vietnam will put on a good performance.”

As U23 Vietnam gears up for their opening match at the U23 Asian Cup 2024 against Kuwait, Coach Hoang Anh Tuan expressed optimism and readiness at the pre-match press conference held on April 15. “We are fully prepared,” stated Coach Tuan, emphasizing the team’s enthusiasm as they enter one of the biggest challenges in Asian football.

Vietnam finds itself in a competitive Group D alongside old rival Uzbekistan, who defeated them in the 2018 final, Malaysia, who they lost to in the 2022 group stage, and the relatively unknown Kuwait, their first opponent in the tournament. Coach Tuan described the group as competitively balanced, acknowledging the strength of Vietnam and Uzbekistan as previous finalists, while recognizing the potential challenges posed by the other teams.

“The first match against Kuwait is not going to be easy,” said Coach Tuan. He highlighted the importance of respecting the opponent and has advised his players on the necessary strategies and focus required for the game.

This tournament in Qatar sees one of the youngest squads Vietnam has fielded, a point Tuan highlighted as he considers this team the future of Vietnamese football. He is keen for his players to seize this opportunity to showcase their abilities against top continental teams, helping them to advance towards professional careers and potential national team selection.

On the other side, Kuwait’s coach, Emilio Peixe, views the tournament as a foundational step for the future of Kuwaiti football. Despite acknowledging his team’s lack of experience and the modest past performances in the U23 Asian Cup, Peixe remains committed to competing vigorously. “Vietnam is a strong team with a new coach, but our ambitions are unchanged,” he noted, expressing his intent to push his team to their limits.

The much-anticipated match between Vietnam and Kuwait is scheduled for 10:30 PM Hanoi time tomorrow, while Malaysia will face Uzbekistan earlier in the evening at 8:00 PM. Fans and spectators can look forward to what promises to be an exciting start to the tournament, with teams eager to demonstrate their prowess and advance beyond the group stages.

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