SHARJAH, UAE, Oct. 6 (Xinhua) — – China’s national team head coach Li Tie says all his players are ready to fight and try their best to beat Vietnam in Thursday’s FIFA World Cup qualifier here.
“My players worked very hard in the training camp and their current physical condition is far better than during the first two matches last month, when we lost to Australia and Japan. Apart from the injured players, all the others have a strong desire to fight. I hope the players who play tomorrow show their best form on the pitch,” Li said at Wednesday’s pre-match press conference.
China has been training in Sharjah for nearly one month due to the pandemic, and Li admitted it was a difficult situation for the team and himself. “It was the first time for everyone to have a training camp like this. We had training sessions that were high in both intensity and volume, and the long closed training period might affect the players’ mentality, which they must overcome.” he added.
After losing the first two matches in its qualifying campaign, China has to defeat Vietnam to keep its World Cup dreams alive. “The Vietnamese team has made great progress in the past 10 years. We respect our opponent, but we have only one goal in the game, which is to strive for victory with all our strength. For international competitions at this level, every game is like a final,” Li noted.
“We have done a lot of targeted training for Vietnam. I believe that the players are ready and I hope we have a wonderful game,” Li added.
Vietnam head coach Park Hang-seo also emphasized the importance of the match. “Both teams lost their first two matches. It’s a very important match and big pressure for me as well as my team. China is ranked higher than Vietnam, so it’s not easy. We will play our style of football and will be focused on the match,” the South Korean said.