Vietnam out of contention for 2012 Olympics football contest

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Vietnam has failed to qualify for the 2012 London Olympic Games after a 2-leg aggregate 1-6 defeat to Saudi Arabia including a 1-4 home loss at Hanoi's My Dinh Stadium on Thursday.

It was expected to be hard fight for the Vietnamese U23 players because they'd not been able to prepare well as a team, and the loss highlighted the lack of experience of the team's defenders.

Speaking after the match, coach Phan Thanh Hung said, "I had expected our players to play better than in the first leg but they made more mistakes.

"They were in high spirits but their skills are not good enough yet and there's much work to do now. Being defeated on home soil is very disappointing but it shows us what we need to work on to improve.

Coach for the victors, Yousef Anbar said, "The Vietnamese players didn't play too badly but they didn't play as well as they had in the first leg. Their captain Trong Hoang and striker Van Quyet were the best, but it was not enough to make a difference.

"We didn't expect to score so many goals but the Saudi Arabian players deserved to win the game because they played better and were not under any psychological pressure."

Vietnam's national football team coach Falko Goetz said, "I am pleased and appreciate the Vietnamese U23 team for their high spirits, but there's so much we have to improve upon. Many changes must be made to make the team play better. Our goal is the 26th Southeast Asian Games in Indonesia. We must work hard from now if we want to have a good future."

Vietnam Football Federation chairman Nguyen Trong Hy said, "I am sorry because Vietnam couldn't take a win on home ground. But we shouldn't blame the team for everything because they did their best.

"By comparison, the Saudi Arabian U23 team had played together for 10 months and played seven international friendlies while the Vietnamese team had just gathered just a few weeks before this event. We should be patient because our major task is the 26th SEA Games."

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