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Jul 03, 2023 / 21:56

Australian Ambassador: Vietnamese women footballers make us proud

Vietnamese players say they respect all competitors but are not scared in the nation's first-ever World Cup game.

Vietnamese women’s national football team has received congratulations ahead of their departure to the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023, co-organized by Australia and New Zealand from July 20 to August 20.

New Zealand Ambassador to Vietnam Tredene Dobson (L) and Australian Ambassador to Vietnam Andrew Goledzinowski at the reception. Photos: Australian Embassy in Hanoi 

“You are already winners, go and enjoy yourselves – you’ve already made us proud,” Australian Ambassador to Vietnam Andrew Goledzinowski said at an exclusive gala reception held in Hanoi on July 2 to bid good luck to them before the team departs for the World Cup competition which they will attend for the first time.

The reception marked the attendance of the Australian Ambassador, New Zealand Ambassador to Vietnam Tredene Dobson, senior officials of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the Vietnam Football Federation, head coach Mai Duc Chung and some key players.

At the event, the guests celebrate the remarkable achievements of the Vietnamese women’s national football team and their milestones to join the third most-watched sporting event in the world.

Guests met team members and wished them luck ahead of their historic journey. The two ambassadors also presented farewell gifts to the departing team.

Australian Ambassador Andrew Goledzinowski said the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 is a great opportunity to promote women in sports. “I congratulate you all on being part of this incredible sporting occasion,” he stated.

New Zealand Ambassador Tredene Dobson expressed her excitement as the date of departure approaches, saying: “We have been waiting for this day for so long and are delighted to welcome the Vietnamese women’s national football team to Aotearoa New Zealand as the team plays in its first-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup.”

“We know that Vietnam’s golden girls will do Vietnam proud, and we look forward to the people of Aotearoa, New Zealand, getting to know the fighting spirit they have displayed in the lead-up to this competition,” she emphasized.

The team will depart for New Zealand on July 5 to prepare for the group round where they will compete against defending champions the US, Portugal, and the Netherlands – runners-up in France 2019.

 The two ambassadors and Vietnamese officials wish the team luck ahead of the departure. 

To make Vietnamese people proud

Vietnam will face the US, the reigning world champions, in its opening World Cup match. To approach that test, Tran Thi Thuy Trang said facing big teams like the US is a huge challenge, but it is an opportunity for the team to learn from them. They are very strong in terms of physicality. “We have to know our positions and we will have a good strategy to face them, with defense and counter-attack,” Trang told FIFA.

Trang said the national team’s debut at the World Cup would give women’s football in the country an even greater chance to gain experience and improve.

Meanwhile, with the honor of representing his country at the competition, Coach Mai Duc Chung spoke to FIFA about how his team's motivation will come from a desire to make their country’s people proud.

“The Vietnamese are enthusiastic and passionate when they come to football,” he told FIFA. “When our men's or women's teams win, people from Hanoi go onto the streets cheering! These images stimulate our spirit. When we raise our flag and sing the national anthem at the World Cup, nothing could make us happier.”

The coach believed his team was prepared and eager to compete with the best in the world.

When asked how to approach challenges when facing strong teams, Chung said the team is not stressed but excited to encounter strong teams like them because playing against such great and famous players is rare for Vietnamese players.

He said his team has good preparation, especially in terms of physicality. “If we want to show our qualities on the field, we must have physical strength and agility,” he said.

He also considered the tactical formation to make it suitable for each match. He said his players must handle situations quickly as they can't kick the ball high and long, run and pass for long.

He said the Vietnamese players would respect all the competitors but are not scared as it’s a chance to compete with very good opponents, and they can learn from their experience, skills and techniques.

 Singer Minh Beta wishes the players luck ahead of Vietnam's maiden World Cup appearance.