|Quảng Nam celebrate winning the trophy of the Vietnamese National Football Cup on February 24. — Photo vietnamnet.vn|
HÀ NỘI — Quảng Nam beat Sông Lam Nghệ An (SLNA) 1-0 to lift the trophy of the National Super Cup, held at Hàng Đẫy Stadium in Hà Nội on Saturday.
Midfielder Thiago Papel scored the only goal for Quảng Nam to help the team triumph in the event.
Quảng Nam are the defending V.League 1 champions, while SLNA are the winners of Vietnamese National Football Cup.
It is the first time Quảng Nam have triumphed in both the national premier league and National Super Cup.
Before the match opening, the two teams were both determined to notch a victory in the football season on a lucky note.
SLNA used two U23 players, Phan Văn Đức and Phạm Xuân Mạnh, who competed in the AFC U23 Championship in China in January, where Việt Nam took the silver medal. Coach Hoàng Văn Phúc of Quảng Nam used two foreign footballers: Thiago Papel and striker Luiz Dias alongside 2017 Golden Ball captain Đinh Thanh Trung.
The two teams played attack as soon as the referee blew his whistle. In the 42nd minute, after receiving a pass from midfielder Phan Thanh Hưng, Papel opened the score for Quảng Nam.
After the break, SLNA made every effort to level the score to lead the game to the penalty shootout. They failed and walked away with the bonus of VNĐ200 million (US$8,700) for the runners-up. The winners Quảng Nam received a prize of VNĐ300 million ($13,000) in cash. Captain Trung of Quảng Nam won the best footballer award with the prize of VNĐ10 million ($430).
Speaking after the match, coach Phúc of Quảng Nam confirmed that his team won the event thanks to their strategy of taking full advantage of the weak points of SLNA’s goalie Nguyễn Văn Hùng, who replaced goalie and captain Trần Nguyên Mạnh who broke his arm in the recent AFC Cup 2018 match.
Coach Nguyễn Đức Thắng showed his satisfaction with his players’ performance although they had lost.
“SLNA players played very determinedly. What a pity that we weren’t lucky. SLNA will forget this loss to prepare for the qualifying round of the AFC Cup on February 28 at Vinh Stadium and then the opening match of the national top flight league on March 10,” said Thắng.
The Super Cup match has been held between the V-League champions and the National Cup winners every year since 1999. SLNA has been the most successful, lifting the trophy four times (including three consecutive years from 2001 to 2003). — VNS