HCM CITY — With leaders Sai Gon FC taking on formidable Becamex Binh Duong in the 11th round of the Eximbank V-League this weekend, Ha Noi T&T seem set for a return to the top.
|Clash of the Titans: League leaders Sai Gon FC (pictured) take on formidable foes Becamex Binh Duong in the 11th round of the Eximbank V-League this weekend. — VNA/VNS Photo
Sai Gon, who suffered a defeat by Ninh Binh last week, are unlikely to get full points against third-placed Binh Duong, who have 17 points, though coach Lu Dinh Tuan's team always play well at home.
Binh Duong proved their credentials as a serious title contender by winning two games in a row and with the return of striker Nguyen Anh Duc, who scored three goals in those matches.
Second-placed Ha Noi T&T are favourites despite playing away against Hoang Anh Gia Lai, while fourth-placed SHB Da Nang have a difficult trip to Dong Thap.
At the bottom, second-last team Kien Giang will take on bottom-placed Hai Phong, with a demotion to last place awaiting the losers.
Song Lam Nghe An (SLNA), who have drawn their last four matches and eight in all this season, are unlikely to improve their forgettable record at Ninh Binh who beat leaders Sai Gon 2-0 last week.
In-form Navibank Sai Gon, who recently scored identical 3-1 wins over Da Nang in the V-League and Arema Indonesia in the AFC Cup, visit Ha Noi FC, while Khanh Hoa are likely to get full points against Thanh Hoa.
With Sai Gon and Ha Noi T&T tied at the top on 19 points, and Binh Duong and Da Nang following them just two and three points behind, any of the teams could finish top after the first half of the season.
However, consistent Ha Noi T&T appear to be in pole position.
After the away match against Hoang Anh Gia Lai, they will be back home to take on Sai Gon.
Then, in the 13th and last round of the first half, Ha Noi T&T will travel to Kien Giang while Sai Gon will face tough SLNA.
Binh Duong are also in a good place with games against mid-table teams Hoang Anh Gia Lai and Khanh Hoa. — VNS