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Việt Nam win 4-0 in SEA Games opener

Update: August, 16/2017 - 09:00
Đoàn Văn Hậu (centre) and teammates celebrate a goal in Việt nam’s 4-0 win over Timor Leste in the Malaysian SEA Games. — Photo courtesy of VFF Đoàn Văn Hậu celebrates his goal in Việt nam’s 4-0 win over East Timor in the Malaysian SEA Games. — VNA/VNS Photo Quốc Khánh
Viet Nam News

SEA Games/Football

HÀ NỘI — Đoàn Văn Hậu scored a double in Việt Nam’s 4-0 win over Timor Leste in the first round match of Group B at the Southeast Asian Games yesterday in Malaysia.

The defender shot his first goal to open the score when he caught the bounced ball in the penalty area after a corner kick by Nguyễn Công Phượng. A close-range finish gave no chance to East Timor’s goalkeeper Fagio Augusta at the eighth minute.

Hậu secured his second goal just five minutes before the interval. He managed the ball and made a straight 25m shot into Timor Leste’s net, that Augusta stretched to his full height to the left but failed to block it.

The player who is a member of Việt Nam U-20 squad also created a chance for teammate Hà Đức Chinh.

Chinh who missed tons of opportunities in this match netted his only goal which was sandwiched between Hậu’s winners. Hậu sent a perfect pass into the box where Chinh flew near the ground and headed into the net.

Timor Leste tried hard to narrow the gap. However, they failed to break Việt Nam’s defence.

A 10-minute rest did not help them much.

Striker Phượng found no difficulty in raising the score to 4-0 at the 72nd mark with a low finish.

This was the second time that Việt Nam had beaten Timor Leste within a month. At the Asian U-23 Championship qualification, Việt Nam beat them with the same result.

Coach Nguyễn Hữu Thắng was satisfied with the win but regretted the fact that his players wasted too many chances.

“It was a good match that my players could set up a safe result from the first half. The result reflects the happening of the match but Việt Nam missed many threatening chances. It is partly due to the poor quality of the turf that prevented players from showing their best skills,” Thắng said at the post-match briefing.

“I am not surprised with Hậu’s performance. Watching him regularly at the U-20 squad I have found that he usually scores beautiful goals from difficult angles like he did today. He is young but confident and hardworking,” Thắng said.

“There are several things that need to be corrected. They lost their focus at some moments, and I have to wake them up,” he added.

On the other side, coach Kim Shin Hwan appreciated Việt Nam and said the win was a worthy one for his rivals.

The South Korean who last month said he would show a different team in the SEA Games, failed to keep his word.

This time, he said, Việt Nam were really strong and were the No 1 team in SEA Games.

In the match held at the same time defending champions Thailand drew Indonesia 1-1. Later, the Philippines beat Cambodia 2-0.

“Title candidates Thailand and Indonesia have only one point and rank behind Việt Nam after the first matches. But it is too early to say anything (about the semi-final candidate),” Thắng said.

With this win, Việt Nam are on top the table and will play bottom-placed Cambodia tomorrow while Timor Leste will face Thailand. Indonesia’s next rivals will be the Philippines.

In Group A activities on Monday, Myanmar took advantage of Singapore’s lapse in defence to register a comfortable 2-0 victory and Malaysia enjoyed a good start with a hard fought 2-1 win over Brunei. — VNS

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