HCM CITY —The nation's top-tier football championship, V-League, returns this weekend with particular interest in matches between football clubs hailing from the same city.
|Derby duel: Ha Noi T&T players celebrate after scoring a goal during their match in the V-League's first half. T&T will play Ha Noi FC today. — VNS Photo Quang Thang
Ha Noi T&T will host Ha Noi FC at the Hang Day Stadium today in a match that promises exciting fare, given the quality of their players and their current form.
T&T, who have not been defeated in five recent games, lead the table with 27 points, eight more than their seventh-placed opponent, who are also enjoying a five-match unbeaten streak.
However, T&T are the obvious favourites because coach Phan Thanh Hung has a well-balanced team with quality players in all areas who are combining well. The broad line up is goalkeeper Duong Hong Son and Cristiano Roland in the defense, midfielders Nguyen Van Quyet and Cao Sy Cuong in the midfield and strikers Samson Kayode and Gonzales Marronkle up front.
Meanwhile, Ha Noi are a somewhat unbalanced team with good quality up front but lacking creativity in the midfield and the solidity in the back four. This can be seen in the number of goals the team has scored and conceded so far. The team has scored 27 goals mainly through two top strikers Timothy Anjembe and Le Cong Vinh, the most prolific pair in V-League 2012. But the team has also conceded 24 goals, only behind bottom-placed Hai Phong.
Another match between two home teams takes place as second-placed Sai Gon FC meet 10th-placed Navibank Sai Gon, both based in HCM City. Sai Gon FC, the hosts, have more qualified players and are expected to win the match played at the Thong Nhat Stadium on the Reunification Day. Furthermore, Navibank have not been in as good form as their opponents in recent games. — VNS