AFC Asian Cup 2019: 5 talking points as Vietnam enter last eight with penalty shootout win over Jordan

Park Hang-seo’s Vietnam edged past Jordan in penalty shootouts to enter the quarterfinals of the AFC Asian Cup 2019 in what was a nail-biting match at the Rashid Al Maktoum Stadium in Dubai on Sunday.

The score remained 1-1 after extra time, but it was the Southeast Asian champions who progressed winning the shootouts 4-2!

Jordan were finding it hard to cope up with the Vietnamese attacks, but they managed to change the game on its head when Baha’ Abdel-Rehman scored a spectacular goal from an indirect free kick in the 39th minute. However, Vietnam found a way back when Nguyen Cong Phuong headed into restore parity early in the second half.

The Golden Dragons probed for a winning goal throughout the second half, but the Jordanian defence held firm with extra time employed to separate the sides. However, the 30 extra minutes were also not enough to split them as the game went into penalties in which the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 champions emerged victorious.

So, FOX Sports Asia looks at the five key talking points from the nail-biting game.

1) Park’s men looked a better team in the first half

The young Vietnam team were looking the better of the two outfits in the first 45 minutes and created more chances than their counterparts. And one player who stood out for the Golden Dragons was 19-year-old Doan Van Hau who was adventurous along the left flank. In the 35th minute, Van Hau played a one-two with Cong Phuong at the edge of the box to fire in a left-footer that was kept out by Jordan goalkeeper Amer Shafi. The veteran goalkeeper was once again called into action when he had to tip over Nguyen Trong Hoang’s 35-yard effort. However, they had no goals to show for despite their initiative in the first half.

2) Questionable refereeing decision leads to a sublime strike

AFC Asian Cup 2019: Jordan 1-0 Vietnam – Baha’ Abdel-Rahman (39′)

But, the Nashama who were in Vietnam’s shadows for a lion share of that 45 minutes were the ones to take he lead. Vietnam players and fans were furious when the referee awarded an indirect free kick inside the box when both Do Hung Dung and Salem Al-Ajalin challenged for a ball with their foot raised. But the referee charged Hung Dung with the infringement. But what happened next was top drawer stuff as Baha’ Abdel-Rehman curled in the indirect set piece from a challenging angle to give the Jordanians the lead with barely five minutes to for the half-time break.

3) Vietnam strikes back through CP10

AFC Asian Cup 2019: Jordan 1-1 Vietnam – Nguyen Cong Phuong (51′)

Coach Park’s Vietnam have developed a reputation as a team that doesn’t give up that easily and that character was there to be seen in the second half. Knowing that they needed a goal and early in the second period, they threw caution to wind and were quick out of the blocks. And they were rewarded for their positive attitude in the 51st minute when Cong Phuong headed in to level things up at the Al Maktoum Stadium. The 23-year-old striker who’s movement was excellent through the game was at the end of a cross whipped in by right wing-back Trong Hoang and expertly directed it past the Jordan custodian.

4) More attacking intent from Vietnam, but Jordan hold on

Vietnam had the opportunity to go ahead soon after when Phan Van Duc got behind the Vietnam defence and chipped the goalkeeper. But Anas Bani Yaseen was there to produce a clearance off the line to save Jordan’s day at the hour mark. There were also more opportunities for the likes of Nguyen Quang Hai who blasted over and substitute Nguyen Tien Linh who’s effort was charged down by the Jordanian defence. In the end, 90 minutes of regulation time ended with Vietnam having more possession and attempting 18 shots at goal compared to Jordan’s eight! However, the most telling of the stat was that Vietnam didn’t concede a single corner kick in the 120 minutes they battled it out with their West Asian opponents.

5) Vietnam emerge victorious on penalties 

Penalty shootout (Vietnam win)

It was 1-1 in the shootouts after Vietnam captain Que Ngoc Hai and Jordan’s goalscorer Baha’ did the needful to convert their penalties. However, Baha’ Seif rattled the crossbar and Vietnam goalkeeper Dang Van Lam saved off Ahmed Saleh giving Vietnam  the match points. However, they had to wait a little longer as Shafi dived to his right to deny Tran Ming Vuong’s fourth penalty. But the Golden Dragons finally booked their spot in the quarterfinals when young centre-back Bui Tien Dung coolly slotted it past Shafi to send the Vietnam players, coaches and fans into delirium!