|Bình Định players celebrate their goal in the 4-1 win over Becamex Bình Dương on Sunday. Photo of VPF|
HÀ NỘI — A big 4-1 win over Becamex Bình Dương lifted Bình Định to V.League 1 second place, with coach Nguyễn Đức Thắng ready for a more difficult challenger.
Jermie Dwayne Lynch secured a double in the second half after Nguyễn Xuân Nam's opening goal just 13 minutes into the game for the hosts at Quy Nhơn Stadium.
Lý Công Hoàng Anh made it 4-0 at the 83rd minute mark to end Bình Dương's hopes.
National striker Nguyễn Tiến Linh, back in action after weeks of injury, netted a consolation in the last seconds of the match.
Bình Định jumped to second position with 23 points for the first time this season, while Bình Dương to ninth on 15 points.
"My team played pretty well and managed the match. We faced some moments of difficulties but the result was great," said Thắng at the post-match briefing.
The former national defender said his key players' return to action had helped Bình Định reach their top performance in three games in a row.
"Wins pushed our confidence and we will do better in every match," he said.
Bình Định will visit in-form Hà Nội FC on Friday and Thắng believes they can take all three points home.
"Hà Nội are strong but we can beat them. Last year, we defeated them at Hàng Đẫy. And this year, it can happen again," he said.
Coach Lư Đình Tuấn of Bình Dương appreciated Bình Định for their solidarit, which helped them overcome a difficult period and lift their spirit.
"Bình Định are home to quality players who are national team members. Their foreigners are good and experienced too," said Tuấn, adding that if Bình Định could stop Hà Nội in the next match they have a shot at the V.League 1 title.
In the other match, Viettel FC bagged their third win in a row to maintain their berth in the title race.
The former champion beat Đông Á Thanh Hóa, who were without their head coach Ljupko Petrovic, 3-1 at the Hàng Đẫy on Sunday.
Petrovic has been out for two weeks because of a health problem.
Thanh Hóa assistant Svetislav Tanasijevic said his absence did not affect the club's ability but it was not ideal.
It was the second loss for the team in Petrovic's time off.
Gustavo Santos Costa opened the score for the visitors early in the eighth minute. But Pedro Paulo Alves Vieira Dos Reis, Abdumuminov Jakhongir and Nguyễn Đức Hoàng Minh did their job for Viettel while their defenders blocked the way leading to goalkeeper Trần Nguyên Mạnh.
Viettel jumped to fourth, with 22 points while Thanh Hóa are eighth with 15.
Next, Viettel will travel south to play Bình Dương on Friday while Thanh Hóa entertain Sông Lam Nghệ An at home the next day. VNS