HCM CITY (VNS)— Defending champions Ha Noi T&T made mincemeat of hosts Dong Tam Long An yesterday, running out 6-1 winners in the 10th-round match of the V-League to jump to second in the table with 15 points.
Striker Hoang Vu Samson scored his first hattrick of the season, Argentinian striker Gonzalo Marronkle grabbed a brace while local striker Nguyen Van Quyet added his name to the score-sheet in the second half.
Brazilian defender Laerte Rodrigues De Azevedo Junior scored the consolation goal for the home team, also in the second period.
The biggest away win so far this season helped coach Phan Thanh Hung's team, who still have three games in hand, reduce the gap with leaders Thanh Hoa to seven points. Thanh Hoa will have a tough match at Hoang Anh Gia Lai today.
The loss confined Long An to second from bottom place with just four points after nine games and facing a growing prospect of a relegation battle.
Using man-to-man marking, the home team considerably limited the visitors' attacking ability and were sharp on the counter-attack.
The best chance of the half fell to Long An captain Phan Van Tai Em, but the former national somehow managed to hit the crossbar with an open goal at his mercy, and the two sides went in at the interval goalless.
The second half was a different story as the game opened up and the goals started to pour in. Samson broke the deadlock with an easy tap-in from Quyet' cross.
Gonzalo doubled the advantage for the visitors on the 67th minute after shrugging off his marker and firing an early shot past surprised goalkeeper Nguyen Huynh Quoc Cuong, who stood glued to the spot as the ball rolled past him.
The score was 3-0 just three minutes later, with Gonzalo on the scorecard again and Quyet providing his second assist.
Samson scored his second to extend the lead to 4-0 ten minutes from time. Quyet was again instrumental, feeding the ball to Samson who rounded Cuong before slotting home an angled shot.
Laerte Junior scored the consolation for the home team with a powerful header from a corner, but it was far too little too late.
Coach Ngo Quang Sang's nightmare was not over, as first Samson completed his hattrick with a close range shot, steering home Nguyen Quoc Long's pass, and then Quyet finally got the goal his performance deserved to cap an excellent display by the champions.
Elsewhere, Hung Vuong An Giang earned their second point of the season after coming from 2-0 down to clinch a 2-2 draw against visitors Vissai Ninh Binh.
The draw left the two sides positions in the table unchanged, with Ninh Binh in 11th and An Giang continuing to prop up the table.
The remaining four fixtures of the round will take place today and tomorrow. — VNS