Vietnam coach steps down


Vietnam coach Phan Thanh Hung has resigned after taking responsibility for a miserable campaign in Group A of the AFF Suzuki Cup with the 2008 champions picking up just one point.

They drew 1-1 with Myanmar, were beaten by eventual qualifiers Philippines 1-0 and were outplayed 3-1 by Thailand, who topped the group with a 100 per cent record, to miss out on the semis for just the second time after their failure in 2004.

Thanh Hung, who had a year left on his contract, presented a lengthy critique of the national team’s performance to the Vietnam Football Federation on Wednesday in which he offered to resign.

“In preparation, we have received the maximum support of the Vietnam Football Federation,” he said. “The players also gave their all, both when training and competing.

“A number of factors led to the national team failing to qualify (for the knock-out stage). As the coach I must take responsibility and I have recommended to the Vietnam Football Federation that I step down from the post.”

Ngo Le Bang, the general secretary of the Vietnam Football Federation, foresaw such a move when he talked to the media in Bangkok last Friday.

“We have signed a contract with him (Thanh Hung) until December next year,” he said. “We will not fire him, we trust him. But, of course, he may resign.”

Thanh Hung, the coach of Hanoi T&T, has been in charge of the national team since May.


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