|Strong showing: It took Văn Toàn (right) just two minutes to open the scoring, setting the tone for the game. — Photo tuoitre.vn|Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Hoàng Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) thrashed Quảng Ninh Coal 4-0 in the 16th round of the V-League yesterday.
The team from Gia Lai also beat Quảng Ninh Coal 4-2 in Pleiku last season, and 5-0 in the National Cup 2018.
HAGL defender Vũ Văn Thanh was suspended for the game after picking up three yellow cards in previous matches, while there were only two naturalized players on the substitute’s bench.
It took Văn Toàn just two minutes to open the scoring, setting the tone for the game, and things got worse for Quảng Ninh Coal in the 26th minute when the team was sent off for a rough challenge from behind on Văn Toàn that resulted in a free kick. Minh Vương stepped up to take it, but smashed his chance against the crossbar.
HAGL were not to be denied, and a pass from unmarked striker Công Phượng from the right wing allowed Văn Toàn to add his second on 40 minutes, and it was 3-0 before half time when striker Công Phượng avoided Quảng Ninh Coal defence to slide home.
In the second half, HAGL were content to keep hold of the ball, and coach Dương Minh Ninh decided to replace goalscorer Văn Toàn with striker Thanh Tùng with 67 minutes gone.
To their credit, Quảng Ninh Coal didn’t stop fighting, hitting the crossbar in the 78th minute with a shot from Nghiêm Xuân Tú.
But it was substitute Thanh Tùng who had the final say, adding a fourth goal in the 93rd minute.
Elsewhere yesterday, Thanh Hoá beat Hải Phòng 2-0, while Sanna Khánh Hòa tied with Bicamex Bình Dương 1-1. — VNS