|Coach Paulo Foiani (2nd right) instructs Hà Nội Police FC players during a friendly tournament that ended on January 16 in the capital. The Brazilian hopes to lead his club to a top-three finish in the 2023 V.League 1. Photo of Hà Nội Police FC|
HÀ NỘI — V.League 1 new boys Hà Nội Police FC have attracted a number of quality players including national team members with high hopes for their debut season.
The tournament will begin on February 3 and will end after five and a half months, the shortest event in history. It made the switch to synchronise with the FIFA's and AFC's competition systems.
Hà Nội Police, formerly People’s Public Security FC, advanced to the national premier league after winning the V.League 2 title last October.
In their name-changing ceremony earlier this month, the international coaching team and new faces were introduced. Despite playing in the First Division for the very first time, they are aiming for a top-three finish.
Brazilian Paulo Foiani has signed as head coach. Before coming to Việt Nam, he took charge of 21 clubs in his home country. Among them were Sociedade Esportiva Juazeirense who finished second at the 2015 Copa Governador Da Bahia; Sinop Futebol and Sportivo who grabbed slots in the 2019 and 2021 Copa Do Brazil, respectively.
In his playing time, the midfielder was captain of Coritiba FC from 1997 to 2001.
"I want to build up a beautiful playing style, the Brazilian style, at Hà Nội Police. This is a club with determined and energic players that will hunt victories," said Foniani, 46.
"I am excited about the new job and will try my best to glue players together into a strong and united team to achieve good results this season."
Foiani will be assisted by Flavio Cruz. The Brazilian has been working in Việt Nam for seven years as both a player and coach with Huda Huế, Bình Định, Gia Định and Navibank Sài Gòn in both V.League 1 and V.League 2.
"I believe that Vietnamese football has made impressive progress with good preparation," he said.
"Our football training centre at the PFV campus provides high-quality facility and training conditions. I think that Hà Nội Police's young and determined players with good technique and tactical mind will help the team become a competitive opposition in the league and we will go far."
The club has signed a two-year contract with defender Hồ Tấn Tài who was part of the national team that reached the final of the AFF Cup.
|Hà Nội Police FC have announced their latest deal, a contract with national defender Hồ Tấn Tài, on their Facebook fanpage. — Photo of VFF|
Tài signed a five-year deal with Bình Định FC early last year after almost two years playing for his hometown club. He was a key player to help the team finish third in the 2022 season. But recently, the club faced a financial crisis of VNĐ38.5 billion of debt including players' salaries and bonuses. This is thought to be the reason that Tài's left.
“I will try to compete, give my best, and help my team finish high in the V.League so that we will not disappoint our fans, coaches and owners,” he said.
Despite being a defender, Tài scored five goals in the 2022 V.League 1, two for the national team at the 2022 World Cup qualifications and one at the AFF Cup.
The club has also introduced national team defenders Vũ Văn Thanh and Đoàn Văn Hậu, midfielder Phan Văn Đức, and former U23 goalkeeper Bùi Tiến Dũng.
Former Becamex Bình Dương captain Tô Văn Vũ and striker Nguyễn Xuân Nam, also arrived in early January.
Duo Bùi Tiến Dụng and Sầm Ngọc Đức are also among the 10 new faces. They are expected to strengthen the team's defence.
At the same time, they will guide young teammates who are home-grown players of the team in the tough V.League 1.
|Hà Nội Police FC players train for the 2023 season. — Photo of Hà Nội Police FC|
In the first-round match, Hà Nội Police will host Bình Định at the Hàng Đẫy Stadium.
Following the tournament format, 14 teams will play in round robin in the first period. In the second, the top six teams will vie for the championship trophy while the rest will fight to avoid relegation. VNS