Vietnam lost 2-1 to Iraq in its opening game at the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Futsal Championships, which kicked off on April 30 in Ho Chi Minh City.

This loss makes it more difficult for Vietnam to reach the knockout stage.

"We played well today and created a lot of opportunities but the problem is that we did not score," coach Bruno Formoso said in the post-match press conference.

"We need to improve a lot to win the next game. This is only the first game and we still have chance to qualify for the next round."

Formoso said his players made a lot of mistakes and that in the next match, they should try to manage the pace and play faster.

Meanwhile, coach Haitham Abbas Bawei of Iraq said they had been nervous during the tough match, but were really happy with their victory. The door is now wide open for them in the tournament.

In the Group B match, Asia's No 1 Iran beat Indonesia 5-1. Earlier Australia won 2-1 over China.

On May 1, Japan had a 4-0 victory over the Republic of Korea while Thailand beat Malaysia 7-1. China suffered a 5-8 defeat at the hand of Lebanon and Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan came to a 2-2 draw.

May 2 will see Vietnam play Tajikistan and Iraq play Kuwait. In Division D, Indonesia will play Australia and China, Iran.

Sixteen countries, divided into four groups, are participating in the tournament.

The championship is the main national competition of the Asian nations. It was first held in 1999 and is held annually. Iran has won 10 out of the 12 editions of the competition played so far, finishing third in two others.-VNA