Vi Hao’s double helps U23 Vietnam secure all three points in their opening match

In an action-packed opening match at the AFC U23 Asian Cup 2024, U23 Vietnam clinched a decisive 3-1 victory against U23 Kuwait, showcasing a promising start for the Vietnamese side in Group D. The game was marked by intense drama and tactical showdowns, leaving fans on the edge of their seats throughout the night.

The match began cautiously, with both teams displaying a slow pace and careful play. U23 Vietnam, under the strategic leadership of coach Hoang Anh Tuan, opted for an attacking formation. However, the game took an unexpected turn when Vietnamese striker Nguyen Dinh Bac was substituted early due to an injury within the first 10 minutes.

The situation heated further when Kuwait’s Ebrahim Kameel was shown a red card after a VAR review for a malicious foul on Vietnamese midfielder Khuat Van Khang in the 29th minute. Despite being a man down, the Kuwaiti team displayed commendable spirit and did not let their numerical disadvantage dampen their resolve.

The deadlock was broken just before the end of the first half when Van Truong masterfully set up Van Tung, who elegantly flicked the ball into the net at the 45+1 minute mark, giving Vietnam the lead. However, the first half’s drama was far from over. In a twist of fate, U23 Vietnam also found themselves reduced to ten men and conceded a penalty. Kuwait’s Awadhi capitalized on this, scoring from the spot in the extended injury time, leveling the score to 1-1 at half-time.

As the second half commenced, U23 Vietnam immediately regained the lead. A blunder by the Kuwaiti goalkeeper allowed Bui Vi Hao to intercept and score easily, making it 2-1. Hao continued his excellent form, further extending Vietnam’s lead in the 76th minute with a powerful left-footed shot after another sharp assist from Minh Quang.

The match concluded with U23 Vietnam securing a strong position at the top of their group, thanks to a well-earned 3-1 victory. This win sets a positive tone as they prepare to face U23 Malaysia on April 20, potentially paving their way for a successful campaign in the tournament. Coach Tuan’s tactical acumen and the team’s resilient performance are promising indicators of their potential to progress far in this year’s championship.

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