China's midfield problems exposed in win over Vietnam, says former Chinese head coach

Source: Xinhua| 2021-10-11 16:54:15|Editor: huaxia

BEIJING, Oct. 11 (Xinhua) -- Chinese men's team has been exposed to be dysfunctional in midfield in the last period of their hard-fought 3-2 win over Vietnam in a FIFA World Cup qualifier, said former China coach Zhu Guanghu.

The Chinese side, who lost to Australia and Japan in their first two games, secured their first win in the third round of Asian World Cup qualification thanks to Wu Lei's goal scored deep into injury time.

But the way China, who was 2-0 ahead until the 80th minute, conceded two goals under pressure in the last ten minutes of regular time was alarming, according to former Chinese head coach Zhu Guanghu.

"The Chinese side leaves much to be desired in the game, especially in midfield where the players should have done better in containing the opposition's attack," said Zhu, who was in charge of the Chinese side from 2005 to 2007.

"What's more, as they could not keep a compact formation in midfield, they lacked defensive depth and solidity there. This brought problems to the central defenders in marking the opposing players and made it hard for the Chinese players to vie for the second balls," he said.

Zhu noted that the win over Vietnam would help the Chinese side find back confidence, which is important for them to face Saudi Arabia on Tuesday in their next World Cup qualifier.

China currently sit six points behind Group B leaders Australia and Saudi Arabia, who both have the maximum nine points from their first three games.

The top two from both six-team groups qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar automatically. The two third-placed teams will then face each other in a two-legged playoff, with the winner of that tie entering an intercontinental playoff. Enditem

KEY WORDS: Sports,Soccer,China