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Women's Football Team Reaches Vietnam's First-Ever World Cup

Việt Nam Cố Lên!

While Vietnam's men's football teams have inspired numerous waves of đi bão in recent years, the men's national team will be watching the next World Cup from the same location as the rest of us: the couch.

The women's team, meanwhile, punched their first-ever ticket to the Women's World Cup in 2023 by beating Chinese Taipei 2-1 on Sunday. This is the farthest a Vietnamese football team has ever progressed on the global stage. 

According to VnExpress, Vietnam opened the scoring thanks to a goal by Chương Thị Kiều in the seventh minute of the match, which was played in Mumbai, India. 

Chinese Taipei tied things up in the 50th minute, and Vietnam responded six minutes later with a goal by Bích Thùy. The squad held on to their 2-1 lead through the end, and are on their way to next year's Women's World Cup, which will be co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand. 

Vietnamese coach Mai Đức Chung told the media after the match that "No words can describe the joy I am feeling right now." 

Incredibly, the women's team secured their historic win while being heavily shorthanded: VnExpress adds that numerous players were unable to fly to India after contracting COVID-19 during training in Spain, and Vietnam was even at risk of dropping out of the tournament. 

The Vietnam Football Federation, the Vietnamese government and a number of local businesses awarded the team nearly VND10 billion (US$441,000) for their achievement. However, it initially appeared that neither the government nor the private sector would sponsor the women’s team to travel back to Vietnam, though the men’s team has flown back on private jets following international victories. The women’s team had planned to take multiple connecting commercial flights from Mumbai, but this afternoon Bamboo Airways announced that they would fly the squad directly from India to Hanoi on February 10.

The 2023 Women's World Cup begins on July 20 of that year, with Vietnam's eventual opponents still to be determined. 

[Top image via Sao Star VN]

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