Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Two national under-23 players scored to help Sông Lam Nghệ An beat Johor Darul Ta’zim 2-0 in their second match of the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup’s Group H in Vinh City on Wednesday.
With two wins from two games the Vietnamese side are on top of the table as the only team to have won all their matches.
Johor Darul Ta’zim who have won the Malaysian Super League for four years in a row since 2014, are second with one win and one loss.
The group’s other teams Tampires Rovers and Persija Jakarta played in a later match Wednesday.
Phan Văn Đức opened the scoring in the 23rd minute in the game that saw the visitors dominating possession.
Đức received a long pass from Hồ Khắc Ngọc in Johor Darul Ta’zim’s box and the midfielder coolly slotted past goalkeeper Farizal Marlias.
His teammate Phạm Xuân Mạnh made it 2-0 in additional time at the end of the second half.
Starting from a counter-attack, after three passes the ball came to Lê Thế Cường who ran to the box and played it back to Mạnh who fired past Marlias.
Earlier, Sông Lam Nghệ An missed two opportunities to extend their lead.
Đức had a chance when he was one-on-one with Marlias. He successful lobbed the Malaysian keeper, but defender Hariss Harun was in possession to clear the ball.
Johor Darul Ta’zim also had attempts in the first half but none were good enough to find Sông Lam Nghệ An’s net.
The second half was more difficult for the visitors as the hosts ran rampant on the counter.
The visitors best chance fell to former Argentina internationl Luciano Figueroa with an 82nd-minute free-kick that forced Lê Văn Hùng into a dive to save.
Both teams’ next matches come on March 6, when Sông Lam Nghệ An host Persija Jakarta while Darul Ta’zim travel to Singapore to take on Tampines Rovers. — VNS