Vietnamese Talents
Dao opens door for Viet women’s coaches
  • | | May 04, 2010 02:03 PM

Phan Thi Anh Dao is determined to pave the way for female coaches in Vietnam.

The 29-year-old Dao believes that women’s coaches can be as successful as their male counterparts and is hoping that the AFC’s Project Future programme can help her achieve her ambitions.

“I am very determined to do my part to improve and develop Vietnam women's football,” Dao told “I am hoping for a chance to show what I can do. After all, women's coaches also need certain degree of recognition and respect.”

The former Ho Chi Minh player retired from playing three years ago and now chaces at the Arsenal Football School, looking after the U10 and U12 boys teams.

High ambitions

While happy for the experience, Dao’s ultimate goal is to coach at the highest level of women’s football – either at a club of national team.

“I would like to coach a proper team, a real team,” she said. “I have set a goal for myself – to be the head coach of my former club Ho Chi Minh City or at least the assistant coach of the Vietnam women's national team.”

This is where Project Future comes in. She believes the programme provides the ideal stepping stone to fulfil her ambitions.

“I believe that the PF can make my dreams come true,” she said. “That is why I am working extremely hard and am fully dedicated whenever I am participating in this course.

“I hope that I am being chosen to take the Vietnam girl's team to the U-13 or U-14 football festival. It will be an ideal start for me.”

Football junkie

Dao admits to being a football junkie. She is driven by the need to succeed in football. Material wealth, she says, fails to compensate for the kind of contentment she draws from the game.

Said Dao: “I am not rich but money is secondary compared to personal satisfaction. I don't need to be very rich to live.

“You are born to have a dream. I don't want to live an empty life and I don’t want to regret a single day. It will be meaningless for me if I can't fulfil my dream.

“I am crazy about football. I can't live without it. Day to day training is a must for me.”

Her unbridled enthusiasm is shared by many women in Vietnam football, a factor that will help her country improve their performances in future events.

She is full of hope for the current crop of youngsters aged 12-16, who she believes have the potential to become a force in Asia.

More support

Dao is also hoping the government and private sector will recognise this potential and support the emerging players.

“What we need now are good coaches who can blend the team together and develop them,” she said. “I believe that in four years time, this batch of players will mature and be ready to challenge the big guns of Asia.

"If the women's team gets the backing from the government, corporate sector or the Vietnam Football Federation, we can even send these young players for stints in big leagues such as Japan, Korea Republic, China and Australia to continue their development.

“I firmly believe that by 2016, Vietnam will be among the top four teams in Asia. Certainly, I hope I can play a part in this development process and am already part of the national team set-up by then,” said Dao.

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