HCM CITY — Strugglers Navibank Sai Gon scored their first win at home this season when they beat Thanh Hoa 2-0 in the seventh round of the Eximbank V-League 2012 on Saturday.
At Thong Nhat Stadium in HCM City, goals from midfielder Luong Van Duoc Em and striker Nguyen Quang Hai in the second half helped Pham Cong Loc's team take full points for just the second time this season.
It not only ended the club's disappointing run but also hauled them up from the relegation zone.
But Loc knows there is a lot left to do given the way his team played against 10-man Thanh Hoa.
"We got the first victory at home and three crucial points. The players combined well at some points in the match, that is the thing I am waiting for from them."
Relegation candidate and bottom club Kien Giang extended their poor run with another home defeat by Hoang Anh Gia Lai, who climbed to the middle of the table.
There is no prospect of Kien Giang improving their ranking any time soon since the Mekong Delta-based club play two away games next against defending champions Song Lam Nghe An (SLNA) and title contender SHB Da Nang.
Hai Phong drew 2-2 with SLNA in an exciting game in front of a packed 15,000-seat stadium.
It included a controversial disallowed goal by SLNA. In a quick attack in the 49th minute, SLNA striker Gustave Bebbe powered past the Hai Phong defenders to fire at goal from a narrow angle after being helped by a blunder from Hai Phong, but the referee ruled that the ball had bend over the goal line before reaching the goal.
Sai Gon FC, as newlypromoted Sai Gon Xuan Thanh are now known, are being held 2-2 by struggling hosts Khanh Hoa.
In other matches of the seventh round played yesterday, Ninh Binh drew with Ha Noi T&T 2-2, Ha Noi FC tied with SHB Da Nang 3-3, while Dong Thap drew goalless with Binh Duong 0-0. — VNS