|VFF General Secretary Nguyễn Minh Châu and Thái Sơn Bắc representative shake hands at the draw and sponsorship signing ceremony to the National Women’s Football Championship in Hà Nội. VNS Photo Quang Thắng|
HÀ NỘI – The National Women’s Football Championship 2016 marked a new step up as it welcomed one more participant to this year’s event.
Eight teams will compete in the tournament, which kicks off in Hà Nam Province in May.
Sơn La FC’s appearance marks a change in the competition’s regulations, and the annual tournament will be organised in a round-robin two-leg format for the first time. The four strongest teams will advance to the semi-finals, and the winner will be named after the final match.
“The new competition rule means that teams will play more games and have more chances to take the crown,” said Trần Huy Đức, head of the Competition Department of the Việt Nam Football Federation (VFF) at a press conference yesterday in Hà Nội.
“A team sitting in fourth position after the round robin stage could win the title if they reach their peak in the knock-out round. And those who enter the semi-finals will ensure their bronze medals,” Đức said.
The first leg round will be from May 9-30 at the Hà Nam Gymnasium in Phủ Lý City.
Hosts Phong Phú Hà Nam will face Việt Nam Coal and Minerals in the opening match.
The second leg round will be from August 22 to September 12 at HCM City’s Thống Nhất Stadium.
Thái Sơn Bắc, long-term partner of the VFF, will continue to sponsor the tournament for the fifth year in a row.
The company will provide nearly VNĐ800 million (US$36,000) in prizes at the tournament, and the winners will bag VNĐ300 million ($14,000).
“It is good that Thái Sơn Bắc is still a key sponsor of the championship. Their support plays a big role in developing the sport among women in Việt Nam,” said VFF Deputy General Secretary Nguyễn Minh Châu.
“VFF appreciates their contribution and hopes the two sides will tighten the co-operation with each other in the future,” Châu said.
“We are happy to continue our support for the women’s tournament for the fifth year in a row,” said Bùi Đình Tế, chairman of the board of directors of Thái Sơn Nam. “Through the years, we have seen the development of the sport in terms of quality and quantity.”
“We expect that with our help the national women’s football team will make strong steps forward while VFF can select many talented players for the national team,” he said.-- VNS