The updated list on Thursday saw the addition of left-back Doan Van Hau, currently recovering from an injury and forecast to return to the pitch in three weeks. The 22-year-old has been a key player in Vietnam’s defense since 2018.
Another addition is veteran striker Nguyen Anh Duc. The 35-year-old may no longer be in his prime but his experience is valuable for the team, according to observers. After seven V. League 2 games, he scored five goals for Long An FC.
Duc represented Vietnam at Asian Games 2018 and in the same year, was key in their AFF Cup victory. In 2019, he announced his retirement from international football, but returned after a talk with coach Park.
Striker Nguyen Anh Duc celebrates a goal for Vietnam in AFF Cup 2018. Photo by VnExpress/Lam Thoa.
Compared to the original list on Tuesday , national goalkeeper Dang Van Lam has been removed, but he will join the team in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). He is currently playing for Japanese club Cerezo Osaka and therefore cannot join the training in Hanoi.
Due to the postponement of V. League from Friday after some players made indirect contact with a woman who tested coronavirus positive, the national team will gather on May 7, three days earlier than initially planned. The squad will train in Hanoi from where coach Park will choose an official list of 23 players before flying to UAE on May 26.
In UAE, the team will play a friendly to test different formations, before entering World Cup qualifiers, where they will face Indonesia on June 7, Malaysia on June 11, and UAE on June 15. All games will be played at 8:45 p.m. (local time) or 11:45 p.m. (Hanoi time).
The Golden Dragons are leading group G with 11 points after five games. They only need five more points to advance to the final qualification round for the first time in history.