Source: Socialist Republic of Vietnam
Not long ago, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) released its plan to restart the 2022 World Cup qualifying campaign in October. Accordingly, Vietnam would have travelled to Malaysia for their sixth Group G match against the hosts on October 13.
Park Hang-seo’s side would then have returned home to host Indonesia on November 12 before leaving for their last round-two match against the United Arab Emirates five days later.
However, amid the complicated developments of the disease, teams in Asia are facing a lot of difficulties in making the necessary preparations. Most recently, at least 18 players in Bangladesh’s football squad summoned for the 2022 World Cup and 2023 Asian Cup qualifiers were found to be positive for the coronavirus, making it harder to control the situation.
Given that fact, on August 12, FIFA and the AFC jointly decided to reschedule all upcoming qualifying matches for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 and AFC Asian Cup China 2023, originally scheduled to take place during the international match windows in October and November 2020, to 2021.
“With the aim of protecting the health and safety of all participants, FIFA and the AFC will continue to work together to closely monitor the situation in the region and identify new dates for the respective qualifying matches,” world football’s governing body said.
Thus, the Vietnamese squad will not play any formal matches in 2020 as both the AFF Suzuki Cup and their remaining World Cup qualifying matches have been postponed.
The rescheduling of the World Cup qualifiers may cause certain difficulties for Vietnam’s national team in their training plans, but offers a chance for the V.League 2020 to be completed this year as the pandemic has been brought under control.
Earlier, on the evening of August 11, the Vietnam Professional Football Company (VPF) decided on two strategies for the resumption of domestic professional tournaments when conditions allow.
Under plan one, the 2020 season will restart with National Cup quarterfinal clashes on September 5-6, semifinal clashes on November 1 and the final on December 13. The nation’s top-flight league, V.League, will return on September 12 with Matchday 12 fixtures of the first phase.
According to plan two, the season will resume with National Cup quarterfinal clashes on September 12-13, semifinals on September 19 and the final on December 23. Meanwhile, the V.League will return on October 18 with the first phase’s Matchday 12.