Football receives staunch government backing in Vietnam
and is extremely popular. However, civil war and political instability severely limited any kind of sporting activity for years. By organising courses and seminars and introducing youth competitions in various age categories, the national association is striving hard to restore Vietnamese football to the level it had reached in the 1980s and 1990s. Recent successes included second-place finishes at the South East Asian Games in 1995 and 1999. The U-17 and U-20 teams also qualified for their respective confederation championships - a feat that bodes well for Vietnamese football.