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Bell urges Korea Republic to remain focused for Play-offs

Monday, February 10, 2020
Korea Republic - Vietnam - WOFT

Jeju: Head coach Colin Bell wants his Korea Republic players to stay on their toes after the East Asians defeated Vietnam 3-0 to seal top spot in Group A of the AFC Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament on Sunday.

The Taeguk Ladies found a way past an ultra defensive Vietnam with goals from Jang Sel-gi, Choo Hyo-joo and Ji So-yun to set up a date with the Group B runners-up in next month’s Play-offs.

Vietnam, who claimed second spot, will face the Group B winners with the triumphant teams from the Play-offs joining hosts Japan as Asia’s representatives at the 2020 Olympics.

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“I’m very happy because we’ve been together for four weeks. We’ve put in a lot of training and worked so hard to play the way we did today," said the Englishman.

“Credit to Vietnam, they are a very well-coached team. I said to my players at half-time, ‘If I was the coach of Vietnam I’ll approach the game exactly the same - to sit deep, basically a 11-man defence.”

Qualifiers - Group A: Korea Republic 3-0 Vietnam

“It was difficult to break through and that’s why I’m pleased with the players, they created a lot of good chances and it was not easy as we had limited amount of space.

“I’m very impressed with the younger players. It’s now an opportunity for them to come in, learn and make their claim especially Choo (hyo-joo), who started and scored along with (Kang) Ji-woo’s 15-minute cameo at the end.”

“The next two games are going to be against a tough opponent. We need to speed things up, be more aggressive but disciplined and well organised at the same time.

“Every victory helps, so that’s why it’s very important to have won both matches to set us up," added Bell, who had seen Korea Republic defeat 7-0 in their opening match.

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[FT] 대한민국🇰🇷 3-0 🇻🇳베트남 올림픽을 향한 그녀들의 전진은 계속됩니다! 대한민국 깔끔하게 2연승을 거두며 A조 1위를 기록합니다! ⠀⠀⠀ 두려움 없는 전진 : MOVING FORWARD! #대한민국 #여자 #축구 #국가대표팀 #도쿄올림픽

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“Right from the start, I said we need to give the girls confidence and there’s nothing better than winning matches.

“At the end of the match I told my players, ‘I love winning’, and I want the girls to have that appetite to win matches and now we will be prepared for whoever our next opponents are.”

Bell’s opposite number, Mai Duc Chung was satisfied with his team’s performance but admitted that Vietnam played a far more superior opponent at the Jeju World Cup Stadium.

“We already knew this match was going to be very difficult for us and we also know that our players could not match the Koreans in fitness, physical strength, power and speed, said Mai.

“Therefore, we played a counter-attacking game and my players followed my instructions well."

“Before the match, I already communicated three important points to the team. We don’t want the Koreans to score many goals, no player should be injured and the players must not be cautioned.

“Ball possession belonged to our opponents but I admire the team spirit and mental strength shown by our players. I’m satisfied with their performance.”

Dù đã chắc chắn giành vé vào vòng play-off sau chiến thắng 1-0 trước Myanmar, đội tuyển nữ Việt Nam vẫn thi đấu đầy...

Posted by Liên đoàn Bóng đá Việt Nam - VFF on Sunday, 9 February 2020


“For our next challenge, we will surely need to improve on defending against long balls. We still have time to make these adjustments before the Play-offs.”

Photos: Korea Football Association

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