AFF Suzuki Cup 2018: Big support can also be a burden, says Vietnam coach Park Hang-seo ahead of final


Vietnam will host Malaysia in the second leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018 final at the My Dinh Stadium in Hanoi on Saturday. And their head coach Park Hang-seo talked about the Golden Dragon’s brilliant supporters on the eve of the game. 

Vietnam have a slight upper hand heading in to the second leg of the final having scored two away goals in a 2-2 draw in the first leg at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium in Kuala Lumpur on December 11.

There were close to 90,000 Malaysian fans cheering the home side in the first leg, but on Saturday, Vietnam will have the comfort of playing in front of their own fans at the sprawling My Dinh Stadium.

“On Saturday, we have a home match and while it’s helpful and a big motivation for the players to have such support, it can also be a burden to have that kind of big support,” said the South Korean tactician during the pre-match press conference ahead of the second leg of the AFF Suzuki Cup 2018.

However, coach Park said that he will prepare his young Vietnamese side not just for facing on-field problems, but also for handling the pressure that comes from carrying the hopes of millions of Vietnam fans.

“I’ll make sure to ask the players to be calm and control themselves,” he said.

“Myself and the players know just how important the second leg of the final is and we don’t want to let the Vietnamese people down,” said the 59-year-old coach.

“We played in front of more than 80,000 in Kuala Lumpur and, even though the stadium at My Dinh is smaller, I’m confident that we can make an even better atmosphere for our team,” he said.