According to data from sports performance analysis company InStat, Vietnam had some positive sparks in the two losses against Saudi Arabia (1-3) and Australia (0-1).
The first is the 21-year-old center-back Nguyen Thanh Binh. In the clash with Australia, Binh only played the last 18 minutes but his performance was pretty good. Binh won two out of three duels, made two successful tackles and won the ball back twice inside the box. With these stats, he could be a great backup for the defense, which are facing an injury crisis.
Left-back Nguyen Phong Hong Duy also stepped up his game and proved to be a worthy replacement for key defender Doan Van Hau, who is still recovering. He had the most shots during the match against Australia with three. He also made two successful tackles and won four duels against Australian winger Riley McGee, keeping the left flank safe. In the game with Saudi Arabia, Duy also boasted an impressive performance despite only playing 26 minutes. He won four duels in that game.
The only thing Duy needs to improve on is stamina, as he tends to run out of pace after 15 minutes.
Midfielders Nguyen Tuan Anh and Nguyen Hoang Duc are among the top three Vietnamese players with the best stats. They all have a pass accuracy above 80 percent and performed well on defense although they are not defensive midfielders.
Facing Saudi Arabia, Tuan Anh succeeded at 100 percent of his defensive attempts, while Duc hit 67 percent.
As an attacking midfielder and playmaker, Hoang Duc created one chance and had five successful dribbles.
On the offense, besides a consistent and intelligent Nguyen Quang Hai, Phan Van Duc showed why coach Park Hang-seo regularly included him in the lineup. He created four chances in the Saudi Arabia clash, won 67 percent of his duels and retrieved the ball twice. In the Australia game, Van Duc ran out of stamina and left the field after 63 minutes.
These players will continue to be important parts of the team as Vietnam face China and Oman in October.
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