Members of the Vietnamese national women’s football team returned home on February 10 after making history by earning a berth at the FIFA Women’s World Cup for the first time and finishing fifth at the recently-concluded 2022 AFC Women's Asian Cup.
The achievements demonstrated the burning passion of the players to contribute to Vietnam’s football. Women’s football has worked miracles after more than three decades of establishment and development.
Head coach Mai Duc Chung and the players had made thorough preparations after qualifying for the 2022 AFC Asian Cup held in India, with a determination to win a berth at the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup.
The team had joined a training session in Spain in late 2021 but many players then tested positive for COVID-19.
They did not succumb to the challenge and qualify for the quarterfinals of the 2022 AFC Asian Cup. After losing 1-3 to China, who were the eventual champions of the tournament, Vietnam had to compete in the play-off round to vie for a ticket to the 2023 World Cup.
The team showed dominance against regional rivals Thailand with a 2-0 victory, and gained a convincing 2-1 win against Chinese Taipei, making history for earning the first appearance in the Women’s World Cup.
The Vietnamese women footballers’ impressive accomplishments have won praises of foreign fans. Emotional celebrations of head coach Chung and his players were posted on numerous international sports channels.
The International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) described Vietnam’s victory as ‘historic’ and ‘deserved’ and Asian newspapers hailed the achievements of the female footballers, who almost missed the tournament due to COVID-19, stating that they surmounted health challenges and brought glory to Vietnam’s football.
President Nguyen Xuan Phuc underlined that this is deserved achievements earned by the efforts and determination of a team with solidarity and talents, under the guidance of head coach Chung. The President has decided to present Labour Orders to the team, Chung and his players.
All 29 members of the team will be also awarded certificates of merit bestowed by Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh.
Football has been a source of inspiration and pride of Vietnam, showing that Vietnamese can obtain great achievements beyond imagination with their passion, efforts and mental fortitude.
The Party and State have given due attention to the development of Vietnam’s football over the time. After FIFA agreed to a proposal to expand the number of teams taking part in the Women’s World Cup, the football sector has worked to foster foreign training and invite experts for the national team, and made the best conditions for the squad to train and compete abroad.
The success of the women's football team demonstrated the "aspiration for contribution" as mentioned by Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Nguyen Van Hung, which have been shown by concrete actions and deeds.