ESPN commends golden generation of Vietnamese football hinh anh 1The Vietnamese team in a training session (Photo: VNA) 
Hanoi (VNA) – The international sport newswire ESPN on June 15 ran an article lauding the golden generation of Vietnamese football, right before a match against the hosts United Arab Emirates (UAE) to compete for the top place in group G of the second round of Asian qualifiers for the 2022 World Cup and progress to the third round for the first time ever.

Throughout the history of football, very few national teams have had the privilege of boasting exceptionally gifted talents breaking through at the same time, ESPN wrote.

Having a prodigious group of players is one thing, delivering on its potential is a completely different matter. With Vietnam on the brink of going the furthest they have ever gone in the quest to reach the FIFA World Cup, there is no better time for their golden generation to shine than on June 15 when they take on the UAE, according to the newswire.

Labelling any group as the "golden generation" is going to be subjective, so what makes the current Vietnamese cohort so special?
It began in January 2018 when they reached the final of the AFC U-23 Championship and beating teams like Australia, Iraq and Qatar in the process.

They backed that up at senior level at the end of that year, ending a decade-long wait to be crowned champions of Southeast Asia for a second time when they won the AFF Suzuki Cup, despite having a squad with an average age of just 23.7 years.

ESPN commends golden generation of Vietnamese football hinh anh 2Vietnamese players in a training session (Photo: VNA)

A month later, they were making their first AFC Asian Cup appearance in 12 years and again proved they had the mettle to go with their talent. They progressed out of a tough group that included heavyweights Iran and Iraq and then beat Jordan in the Round of 16 before narrowly bowing out at the hands of mighty Japan.

But the Vietnamese could arguably surpass all those achievements tonight.

According to the article, plenty of credit has to go to Vietnam’s coach Park Hang-seo.

Suffice to say, Park can and is now viewed as a fine tactician in his own right.

In the morning of the same day, Park finalised the list of 23 players for the match against the UAE.

Specifically, goalkeepers include Bui Tan Truong, Nguyen Van Toan and Nguyen Van Hoang.

Defenders are Do Duy Manh, Tran Dinh Trong, Nguyen Thanh Chung, Doan Van Hau, Vu Van Thanh, Nguyen Phong Hong Duy, Que Ngoc Hai, Bui Tien Dung, Nguyen Trong Hoang and Nguyen Thanh Binh.

Midfielders comprise Nguyen Quang Hai, Pham Duc Huy, Luong Xuan Truong, Tran Minh Vuong and Nguyen Hoang Duc.

Strikers include Nguyen Van Toan, Nguyen Cong Phuong, Nguyen Tien Linh, Ha Duc Chinh and Phan Van Duc./.