Iran made light work of Yemen, scoring 5 goals while maintaining a clean sheet in their Group D tournament opener, but coach Carlos Queiroz is under no illusions that taking on Vietnam next would be a walk in the park.
It’s been hunky dory for pre-tournament favourites Iran so far as they cantered to a victory against Yemen but former Manchester United assistant manager Carlos Queiroz is not willing to take their next opponents lightly on the back of that.
Referencing their heart wrenching last gasp 3-2 loss against Iraq, Queiroz was all praise for the Golden Dragons.
“I had seen Vietnam’s matches in the buildup to the tournament and I thought they were a good side but after watching their performance against Iraq, I have to say they are a very good side,” he opined.
“They faced Iraq, one of the favourites to win the AFC Asian Cup, and for 90 minutes, Vietnam gave the match their all. They led twice and, despite football not being about being fair, I must say that they deserved, at least, a draw.
“I am not surprised as I know about the Vietnam head coach (Park Hang-seo). He is a good coach and he has good players.”
Queiroz was also quick to talk up his own team’s mentality as well, professing that complacency does not figure into the scheme of things as they prepare to take on a well-oiled outfit.
“This is a team that has played 13 matches since October. They won the AFF Cup and this shows how seriously Vietnam are about doing well in the Asian Cup.
“Iran will never make the mistake of underestimating them because that is not how we are built.”
“We are not an arrogant team and as the leader of my team, I always like to share fundamental values with my players. The foundation is always to respect teams.
“It doesn’t mattter who the opponents are as it is always the same value of respecting them,” he said.