Coach Park reveals secret to bring success to Vietnamese football

Sunday, 2019-04-14 16:00:31
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Since arriving in Vietnam, Coach Park Hang-seo has helped raise the level of Vietnamese football with successive milestones. (Photo: NDO/Tran Hai)
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NDO – The successful journey of Vietnamese football for over a year has resonated internationally. As the key person with the most important contribution behind the proud achievements, coach Park Hang-seo has shared with the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) about the secret to bring about the glorious victories for Vietnamese football.

Since officially coming to Vietnam in October 2017 to lead the national team and the U23 squad, during just the past year and a half, Park and his players have gone through many meaningful journeys, with the runner-up position at the 2018 AFC U23 Championship in China, reaching the semi-finals of the Asian Games, emerging champions of the 2018 AFF Suzuki Cup and being quarter-finalists in the AFC Asian Cup UAE 2019.

“They were all big events for us and to me, it was a miracle year. I think everyone in the team did a really good job in their respective positions. Now we are looking forward because we have a lot of challenges ahead,” Park shared with AFC.com.

Referring to the remarkable progress of the "Golden Dragons" under his guidance, with the success of both the U23 and the national teams, the Korean strategist said that the secret to success is simply from the quality and ability of Vietnamese people.

“I would say the success is the result of the Vietnamese strengths which are solidarity, pride, smartness and fighting spirit. Everybody works not individually but as one team. As the head coach, I have been trying to build confidence and trust in the team,” Park affirmed.

According to Park, a “winning mentality” is his coaching philosophy: “I managed the team to win as many matches as we could. I am the head coach of the national team. Without good results, it would not be easy to get support from the football federation, fans and others. Of course to get good results, hard work is the most basic aspect.”

One of Park’s secrets of success is to inspire his players to gain confidence and arouse their fighting spirit. (Photo: AFC)

The 60-year-old coach also expressed his gratitude and honour to be loved by the Vietnamese fans, even though he is a foreigner working here. According to Park, it is the recognition for what he has done for over a year and he really appreciates it.

Sharing his plans for Vietnamese football in the near future, Park said that with the position of the champion of Southeast Asia, Vietnamese football is affirming their No. 1 position in the region: “Whether others agree or not, we are the champions of ASEAN for the next two years [until 2020 AFF Cup]. We proved it in the 2018 AFF Cup, and we are very proud of it. We will work harder to defend the title.”

“For the AFC U23 Championship Qualifiers, we defeated regional rivals like Indonesia and Thailand. We have gained more confidence from the victories and we proved that we are the best team in ASEAN at the moment,” he affirmed.

In just over a year, Park and his players have gained unprecedented success for Vietnamese football. (Photo: AFC)

For the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers and the 2019 Southeast Asian (SEA) Games, Park admitted that it would be a bit difficult for him to prepare for the two important tournaments at the same time with different coaching staff.

“We have to prepare for two very important tournaments at the same time. While I will manage both teams as the head coach, the coaching staff will be different.

“For the 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, the key players will be from the AFF Cup and AFC Asian Cup. We all already know each other so we will able to prepare efficiently. For the SEA Games, we have not won the title in the last 60 years. It won’t be an easy task for us as we will have to play every two days, so it is very important that all players play the same quality of football,” Park told AFC.