Vietnam will be looking to extend their unbeaten run in the 2022 FIFA World Cup Asian qualifiers when they travel to Dubai to face Malaysia on Friday.
The Golden Star Warriors have not lost any of their last seven international matches across all competitions, while the hosts have suffered defeats in four of their previous six games.
After losing 2-0 against Bahrain in a friendly fixture last month, Malaysia restarted their World Cup qualification campaign in the worst possible manner, losing 4-0 away at the United Arab Emirates.
The Malayan Tigers were only trailing 1-0 heading into the final seven minutes of the match and were pushing to score an equaliser. However, a late brace from Brazilian-born midfielder Fabio Virginio de Lima and a strike from Ali Mabkhout secured all three points for the hosts.
That result leaves Malaysia fourth in Group G, three points behind the UAE who currently sit in second place, occupying one of the four best runners-up positions.
Head coach Tan Cheng Hoe – who has been in charge since 2017 – is not giving up hope of progressing to the next round of qualification, although his side potentially need to win both of their final two games to be in with a chance.
As for Vietnam, they are one of eight Asian teams who sit top of their group and are also unbeaten after their first six games.
The Golden Star Warriors have drawn twice and won the other four, including a convincing 4-0 victory at home to Indonesia on Monday.
Second-half strikes from Nguyen Tien Linh, Nguyen Quang Hai, Nguyen Cong Phuong and Vu Van Thanh helped secure all three points for Park Hang-seo’s side, who remain two points clear of the UAE at the summit of Group G.
Vietnam have an impressive record against Malaysia, winning eight of their last 10 meetings against them, scoring 13 goals and keeping six clean sheets in the process.