Ex-Vietnam coach takes rein at HCM City hinh anh 1Japanese coach Toshiya Miura (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - Former Vietnam national team coach Toshiya Miura said he hopes to lead V.League 1 club Ho Chi Minh City to third place this season.

The 54-year-old Japanese announced this after signing a two-year contract with the club in HCM City on January 5.

The appointment of the former Vietnam coach is another sign of HCM’s ambition after their third-from-bottom finish in the 14-team V.League 1 last year.

“I am very glad and excited to return to Vietnam to train HCM City. I am eager to begin work and meet Vietnamese fans again,” said Miura.

“Last year, the club didn’t finish high in the table, so I have to improve gradually. Our first goal is to enter the top five and then top three in the league this year, and then win the league in the future and compete in Asian events,” said Miura.

“I came here to help HCM City become a strong club and develop to a new height,” Miura added.

Le Cong Vinh, acting chairman of HCM City, was coached by Miura and invited him to return to Vietnam two years after his dismissal by the national side.

Miura was manager both the national and U23 squads of Vietnam in 2014-16. However he was fired before his contract expired due to poor results.

Vietnam lost both games against Thailand during the FIFA World Cup 2018 qualifications and performed poorly against Australia and Jordan during the AFC-U23 Championships in 2016.

However, under the guidance of Miura, Vietnam came third in the AFF championship in 2014 and won the bronze medal in the Southeast Asian Games in 2015.

At the press conference yesterday, HCM City also announced new signings, including six local players and one foreigner.

Local players Tran Phi Son and Sam Ngoc Duc used to play in the national team, while veteran striker Gonzalo Marronkle is one of best scorers in V.League history. The 33-year-old Argentinean’s contract with Hanoi FC has expired, with the player set to become a naturalised Vietnamese citizen.

Also on January 5, HCM City signed a contract with fitness trainer Martin Forkel from Germany, who worked for the Vietnam national teams in 2016-17.

Addressing the press conference, acting chairman Vinh, widely considered one of the best players in Southeast Asia and part of the national team from 2004 to 2016, said he would never interfere with the Japanese coach’s work.- VNA