HA NOI (VNS)— Thanh Hoa continued their winning streak in the V-League after defeating Dong Tam Long An 2-1 yesterday on their home turf in Thanh Hoa City.
Despite playing without key players Nguyen Rogerio and Nastja Ceh, they had no difficulty in setting up their shadows over Long An, who have not won a match in the national premier league, even as five of their first team players were absent because of injuries and cards.
Nghiem Xuan Tu opened the scoring at the 20th minute by converting a penalty kick into the opening goal for the host.
Coach Mai Duc Chung strengthened his team with several changes in the second half. The substitutes brought fresh air to the entire team, who had their double 20 minutes after the break.
Le Van Tan broke into Long An's tired defence to knock out goalie Nguyen Huynh Quoc Cuong on a straight shoot.
The score should have been different had Tan and his teammates not wasted too many threatening opportunities in the following quarter of the game.
Playing in defence, Long An found a narrowing goal at the 84th minute when Thanh Hoa players lost their focus as the match approached the end.
Tran Hoai Nam made a close-range header due to his team's rapid counter-attack.
The goal marked the visitors' final attempt, before they accepted their fourth loss after seven rounds this season.
Thanh Hoa, meanwhile, enjoyed their sixth win in a row, being the only team that has not been defeated.
They are now firmly on top of the ranking table with 19 points, five more than runner-up Quang Ninh Coal, who yesterday beat Dong Nai 3-1.
Nguyen Hai Huy scored a double for the host, while Vu Minh Tuan made it 3-0 before Nguyen Hai Anh stole the only goal at the 78th minute for the host.
The eighth round of the league will kick off March 15-16. — VNS