Vietnam's U23 squad and their coach Park Hang-seo were warmly welcomed home on January 28. (Source: VNA_

Hanoi (VNA) – Football has brought Vietnam and the Republic of Korea (RoK) closer, the Koreatimes quoted a Vietnamese fan as saying after the Vietnamese U23 team, under the guidance of RoK coach Park Hang-seo came in second at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U23 Championship in China.

In his article on the Koreatimes, Jung Min-ho described the frenetic atmosphere in Vietnam on the night of January 27 after the final match between Vietnam and Uzbekistan.   
Despite Vietnam’s loss to Uzbekistan, Vietnamese fans still flocked to the street to celebrate the historic success of the home U-23 team, who were the first Southeast Asian team to enter the final round of the championship.

“Mr Park Hang-seo is loved in Vietnam for his contributions to the U23 team, and his leadership has taken the team to a new high on the regional playground,” the article quoted 28-year-old Giang Nguyen as saying. The woman said the Korean coach’s contribution has helped consolidate the cooperative ties between Vietnam and the RoK.

In Hanoi, fans braved the cold and rains to celebrate the U23 team’s accomplishment deep into the night. Kim Hyo-jin, a Korean living in Hanoi, said the celebration reminded her of the time back in 2002 when the RoK entered the World Cup semi-finals after beating Spain.

The article also mentioned RoK President Moon Jae-in’s praise for the role of coach Park Hang-seo in Vietnam’s U23 team’s performance at the championship. The president also expressed joy because thanks to football, the two countries have become close friends. -VNA