The South Korean tactician took Vietnam to the final of the 2018 Asian Football Confederation (AFC) U23 Championship in what was his first tournament after taking over as head coach in 2017.

Vietnam, unfancied at that time, won plaudits by beating several top teams en route to the final. First they beat Australia 1-0 in the group stage. They then beat Iraq in the quarterfinals and Qatar in the semifinals, both on penalties.

But heartbreakingly they lost 1-2 to Uzbekistan in the last minute of extra time in thick snow in Changzhou, China.

It was the first time Vietnam had made the final of any continental championship, and the foreword had been written for the legend of Park.