Although stopped at the quarter-final round of the AFC Futsal Championship, Vietnam's performance was said to be its best ever.

Their playing was said to have been better than expected, as Vietnam showed remarkable progress and completed their target of reaching the top eight.

Former national player Truong Quoc Tuan noted, "Vietnam had more attacks than in the past. Players worked hard and ran a lot. But the main difference was that they were confident in managing the ball and breaking in to score."

Tuan, who is now coach of the national women's futsal team, was surprised but happy to make note of the Vietnamese players' strong physiques, which were their weak point in the past. They now will play with a busy schedule of four matches in eight days.

"It would be the best tournament for the team, although they still need time to work together," Tuan said.

Tran Anh Tu, head of VFF's Futsal Department, also confirmed that Vietnam's futsal had reached new height.

"It was not luck for us. It is our new level, under coach Bruno Formoso, who has only worked with us for about one month," said Tu, who is also a member of AFC's Futsal and Beach Soccer Committee.

"In the future, we have to work on a plan which include youth training programmes, for those who will be our next generation. Coming up will be more leagues that will provide regular competition for players to practise and raise their skills, as well as learn from their experience," Tu said.

Their next tournament will be the ASEAN Futsal Championship in Malaysia in September.

Japan beat Iran 3-0 during the penalty shootout in the final of the Asian Football Confederation Futsal Championships, which wrapped up on May 10 night.

Goalkeeper Sekiguchi Yushi became Japan's hero when he blocked three penalty shots.

Iran, which was the better of the two teams in terms of possessions and number of goal-scoring chances, performed poorly as the team failed to beat keeper Sekiguchi on all three attempts.

Sekiguchi used his hands and legs to turn away shots from Iran's captain, Mohammad Taheri, as well as players Ghodrat Bahadori and Asghar Hassanzadeh.

The match came down to the penalty shootout after the two teams drew 1-1, with goals from Inaba Kotaro for Japan and Farhad Tavakoli for Iran in the regular time, and was locked in a 2-2 draw in the extra time after goals from Hossein Tayebi and an a goal from Hadmid Amahdi. Sekiguchi did an excellent job throughout the match.

With this victory, Japan successfully defended the title they won two years ago in United Arab Emirates, and this third title has become more meaningful because this was the first time they defeated ten-time champions Iran, to whom they lost in the last five finals.

Iran's Tayebi was given the title of the top scorer, with 15 goals, while the award for the most valuable player of the tournament went to another Iranian player, Asghar Hassanzadeh. Japan received the fair play award.

Previously, in the third place play-off, Rakhmatov Dilshod and Abdumavlyanov Farkhod each scored one goal to help Uzbekistan overcome Kuwait 2-1. Hamad Alawadhi scored the only goal for Kuwait.-VNA