return icon

HAGL midfielder Vuong revitalised under Thai coach

Tran Minh Vuong did not join his teammates in the box and stood outside the area waiting for his chance from a corner kick.

Midfielder Tran Minh Vuong celebrates his goal in the 2018 Asian Games semi-final between Vietnam and South Korea. Vuong is in good form and could be in line for a national team spot. Photo

The ball was headed out and found him, giving the midfielder the chance to guide home a superb volley.

The strike, which gave Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) a 2-0 lead over Nam Dinh before they won 4-3 on Monday, was Vuong’s third goal of the season.

Three goals in nine matches is a good sign for the 25-year-old who has found top form again and is aiming for a berth in the national team.

Born in 1995 in the northern province of Thai Binh, Vuong had a love for football at an early age and was luckier than many friends as he received strong support from parents to follow his passion at the age of 11.

In 2007, was admitted to the HAGL Arsenal JMG Football Academy’s (now HAGL JMG) first training course.

It seemed Vuong would be teammates of the current stars such as Nguyen Cong Phuong, Luong Xuan Truong and Nguyen Tuan Anh. However, that wasn't to be, at least initially.

Vuong failed to make the top grade and was chosen for the second-level course in Pleiku. Players of this class were considered the back-ups of Phuong’s generation.

Vuong, whose father died of a stroke several days after his recruitment, was the best of the class and voted the captain thanks to his hard work and talent.

“I have trained many players but Vuong is the most special one. He is not only talented and excellent in his profession but also strong and brave in life,” said coach Dinh Hong Vinh.

Coach Duong Minh Ninh said he was lucky to have the chance to coach such a professional player like Vuong. He knew his advantages and disadvantages and worked hard to fix his problems even on days off.

“Everybody can see him train with or without teammates and coaches. He never gets tired of sharpening his skills especially long passes and free-kicks. He is a good player on the pitch and an ethical man off it,” Ninh said.

Six years after joining the academy, Vuong made his debut in the V.League 1 in 2013, two years earlier than HAGL’s top-class players.

A year later, the 18-year-old was named the V.League 1’s Best Young Player of the Year.

Vuong played a key role in HAGL’s squad that finished second in the national U19 tournament in 2014. He was called up to the national team that won silver at the Southeast Asian U19 Championship the same year.

Four years later, he was in the national team that finished fourth at the Asian Games. It is the best result for Vietnam at the tournament ever and though they lost 3-1 to South Korea in the semi-finals, Vuong scored against top South Korean goalkeeper Jo Hyeon-woo.

In 2019 Vuong and his teammates secured a silver at the King’s Cup in Thailand.

It was also a season during which he netted 12 goals in 23 matches and was the top Vietnamese scorer. He also secured a berth in the V.League 1’s best XI.

However, 2020 was a disappointing year for Vuong as he spent most of his time on the bench because of a leg injury. He could play only 11 matches with no goals and HAGL struggled.

The attacking midfielder, who controversially posted "Spending whole youth to avoid relegation" on his Facebook in regards to the 2020 season, is now shining once again.

Hoang Anh Gia Lai's Tran Minh Vuong (left) vies for a ball against Nam Dinh's Hoang Xuan Tan during their match on Monday. Photo courtesy of VPF

HAGL this season hired former player and coach Kiatisuk Senamuang as their coach. The Thai ‘Zico’ has revitalised the team and Vuong.

His first goal this year was when HAGL beat Song Lam Nghe An 2-1 in January.

“I started the season with tension. But a goal after 15 months helped me release all my worries and pressure,” said Vuong.

“I found my competitive feeling and was confident with my performance. I was also happy because I again contributed to the team’s win,” he said.

The goal against Nam Dinh on Monday was his 37th in 140 matches for HAGL, making him the club's record goalscorer.

Coach Senamuang has allowed Vuong’s talent to shine and Vuong is glad he came to Vietnam.

“Our coach has changed our football philosophy and competitive spirit.

“He has brought positive colours to our football. He tells us to compete with 100 per cent and more. He encourages us to be strong as warriors and I promise that we will have many things to watch in the future,” said Vuong.

Although HAGL lead the league for the first time in five years, Vuong is keeping his feet on the ground and his mind focused.

“Every game is difficult. It's not only me that has to try and keep my position but the whole team must concentrate. We always keep in mind our determination to win. Our priority target is the top six after the first period. Our current No 1 place is a push for us to be ready for a long race,” said Vuong.

Vuong also expects to earn a recall to coach Park’s team in 2021.

“I have not been the coaches’ first choice. They have reasons. Maybe I am not good enough in their eyes and I need to find and improve my weaknesses. It is the only way to join the national team,” said Vuong.

“I believe that challenges that we meet in life would be strong pushes for success later on. I am always ready whenever called for the nation.”


Ha Noi coach banned for Hoang Anh Gia Lai clash

Ha Noi coach banned for Hoang Anh Gia Lai clash

Coach Chu Dinh Nghiem will be in the stands when his Ha Noi FC take on Hoang Anh Gia Lai today at their home ground Hang Day Stadium in the V.League.

Kiatisak due to arrive in HCM City on Dec. 18

Kiatisak due to arrive in HCM City on Dec. 18

Legendary Thai coach and former player Kiatisak Senamuang is due to arrive in Ho Chi Minh City on December 18 ahead of starting his new job as coach of his former side Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL).


Vietnam's retail market predicted to bustle in 2023

Although 2023 is forecast to see many difficulties, experts expect this is a recovery year of the retail sector after COVID-19 pandemic as there are many signs showing the return of investors and higher demands.

Vietnam's leather and footwear industry targets US$27 billion in 2023 exports

The leather and footwear industry is striving to reach US$27 billion in export turnover in 2023, an increase of about 10% compared to one year earlier amid shrinking major markets and falling demand.

Discovering artisans' skills in Thanh Ha ancient pottery village

If pottery villages now mainly use molds, artisans in the Thanh Ha ancient pottery village in Hoi An city, Quang Nam, have kept their traditional method of making pottery - hand made and wheel thrown.

Destinations across Vietnam report surges in holiday-maker numbers during Tet

Tourist attractions across Vietnam have lured large numbers of holiday-markers during the week-long Lunar New Year (Tet) festival from January 20-26.

EVFTA presents tremendous trade, investment advantages

Commitments outlined in the EVFTA on both trade and investment are expected to contribute to attracting European businesses and investors to expand their activities in Vietnam, further promoting trade and investment cooperation.

10 houses with special architecture in Vietnam

With bold ideas, architects can create houses that are both aesthetic and functional. Here are 10 interesting houses in Vietnam.

89 people killed in traffic accidents during seven-day Tet holiday

A total of 152 traffic accidents occurred nationwide, killing 89 people and injuring 111 others during the 2023 Tet Lunar New Year holiday from January 20-26, reported the Traffic Police Department.

End of Tet holiday marked by high traffic congestion around major cities

In a bid to avoid the congestion, many people opted to return on Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning.

Water resources planning scheme for 2021-2030 announced

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) has announced a water resources planning scheme for the 2021-2030 period with a vision to 2050, which was approved by the Prime Minister in December 2022.

Vietnamese businesses could join global supply chains with sound strategies: experts

A survey conducted by the association showed 63% of Japanese enterprises said they would continue investing in operation expansion in the next 1-2 years, reflecting that investors have great expectations for Vietnam's economic growth.

Ba Ria-Vung Tau welcomes nearly 2,400 international cruise tourists

International cruise ship Mein Schiff 5 with 2,370 tourists docked at SP-PSA port on January 26.


Da Lat faces traffic congestion due to tourist surge


Cashless payments continue to grow in popularity

What is the driving force for economic growth ahead in 2023?

The impressive growth momentum during the past year is expected to be a premise for Vietnam to achieve the growth target of 6.5% in 2023, according to economic experts.

Almost 3,000 tonnes of farm produce exported to China via Lang Son's border gates

Exports of agricultural and fruit products, mainly dragon fruit and mango, reached almost 2,700 tonnes to China through Lạng Sơn Province border gates on January 24, the third day of the Lunar New Year.