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Hải Phòng edge towards V.League top three

Update: October, 21/2017 - 10:00
Hải Phòng’s Andre Diego Fagans runs a ball away from from Sông Lam Nghệ An players during their V.League match yesterday in Vinh City. Hải Phòng win 3-2. — Photo thethao247.vn
Viet Nam News

Football

HÀ NỘI — Despite a goalkeeper crisis and playing away from home Hải Phòng beat Sông Lam Nghệ An 3-2 to climb to fourth place in the V. League yesterday in Vinh City.

They have 35 points, just one away to level with Hà Nội FC who are at third place.

Hải Phòng came to Vinh Stadium without their first and second goalies who were sidelined because of injuries.

The substitute Phan Đình Vũ Hải, 23, was set to play his second match in the league where he faced not only 11 players but also crazy fans of the hosts.

Hải let slip two goals by Olaha Michael at the 22nd minute and Quế Ngọc Hải eight minutes later.

The winning hosts were sandwiched between those of Hải Phòng.

Doãn Ngọc Tân opened the score with a long distance finish that defeated national keeper Trần Nguyên Mạnh just nine minutes from the beginning.

The host needed no match time to level the result when Michael slipped in and sent the ball to the net, scoring his fourth goal this season.

Ngọc Hải grabbed his first winner after a close-range shootout to Vũ Hải’s right corner.

The second half saw Hải Phòng’s domination with their foreign striker Andre Diego Fagans and local forward Nguyễn Đình Bảo tearing Sông Lam Nghệ An’s defence into pieces.

All of their 25m shots gave keeper Mạnh no chance to save his net.

It was Sông Lam Nghệ An’s first defeat after their three wins and one draw. They stay at No 9 with 27 points.

All eyes will be on Cẩm Phả Stadium when Quảng Ninh Coal host FLC Thanh Hóa who need a win to maintain their chance to take the V. League trophy for the first time in history.

Thanh Hóa fell to second place after they drew Hà Nội FC 3-3 in last weekend’s match. With similar points, Thanh Hóa ranked behind Quảng Nam because Thanh Hóa drew one and lost one to Quảng Nam in their two leg matches this season.

In tomorrow’s match, Thanh Hóa will have to play under the heavy pressure of a must-win and thousands of excited fans of the hosts.  But they have history on their side as they beat Quảng Ninh 1-0 in the first leg match on June 9. Last year, Thanh Hóa also had a 6-4 aggregate after two games.

Quảng Ninh also have to win this match so that they can enter the top three and keep their hopes alive of winning the title as there are only five matches to go this year. Otherwise, the team whose strikers are struggling to score will have to say goodbye to their dream. In the four latest matches, Quảng Ninh netted only one goal.

In Tam Kỳ City today, hosts Quảng Nam need a win against Hoàng Anh Gia Lai to stay on top of the tournament.

The visitors will compete with new coach Dương Minh Ninh and new technical director Chung Hea-seong who are expected to help them out of the risk of relegation.

After four losses in a row, Hoàng Anh Gia Lai are third from the bottom with only two points more than their nearest rival Cần Thơ.

Hoàng Anh Gia Lai, home to many national senior and youth team members, defeated Quảng Nam 1-0 in the first leg match this season.

Third-placed Hà Nội FC will play Cần Thơ, in the latest match this week. Among the three top teams, their task is said to be an easy one and the hosts would claim all three points on the home ground. Cần Thơ earned only one point from three recent matches and are No 13 out of 14 teams.

In Nha Trang City, Sanna Khánh Hòa will welcome SHB Đà Nẵng who have not won over the hosts in the past two years. In the first leg match, Đà Nẵng, playing on home turf Hòa Xuân Stadium, lost 0-1 to Khánh Hòa.

“We have not had a good result against Khánh Hòa who often play well against big teams. They are always our big trouble,” said coach Lê Huỳnh Đức of Đà Nẵng.

“In the coming match we will play our best for a positive result,” he said.

In other matches, HCM City will host Becamex Bình Dương and Long An will welcome Sài Gòn FC. — VNS

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