|On the ball: Hà Nội FC’s midfielder Nguyễn Quang Hải (first left) competes against a player of Sông Lam Nghệ An. Hà Nội FC beat SLNA 2-0 in the 21st round of V.League 1, becoming the champion of the tournament five matches in advance. — VNA/VNS Photo Trọng Đạt |Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Hà Nội FC beat Sông Lam Nghệ An (SLNA) 2-0 in the 21st match of V.League 1 yesterday at Hàng Đẫy Stadium in Hà Nội.
With this victory, Hà Nội FC have officially become the champions of the tournament five matches in advance.
Returning to V.League 1 after a long break, Hà Nội FC set a target of gaining three points on home soil. However, SLNA proved not to be so easily-defeated, despite strong support from the host’s fans who filled the stadium.
Taking advantage of their home soil, coach Chu Đình Nghiêm applied a proactively-attacking and pressing strategy right from the start. Players like Thành Lương, Quang Hải and Oseni Ganiyu Bolayi constantly created threatening situations in front of goalkeeper Vũ Hải; however, all shots by the capital city team missed the target, particularly forward Oseni who missed a penalty in the 18th minute. The first half ended goalless.
Entering the second half, coach Nghiêm was forced to field his key attacking player, striker Hoàng Vũ Samson, in an effort to score the opener. It did not take long for the player, who has recently been granted with Vietnamese citizenship, to find the back of the net in the 60th minute.
The visitors changed their formation on seeking the equaliser and created several opportunities. However, the first goal seemed to boost the host’s spirit. Samson, after receiving a pass from midfielder Nguyễn Quang Hải, ended the match for Hà Nội FC with his second goal in the 93rd minute.
Earning three points with the win over SLNA, Hà Nội FC became the champions of V-League with 54 points.
Elsewhere, another important match in the race to preserve their rank in the table, Sài Gòn defeated Becamex Bình Dương 2-0, Nam Định lost to Khánh Hoà 1-2, Đà Nẵng won over Cần Thơ 2-1 while Hoàng Anh Gia Lai suffered a shocking loss 0-3 in a match against Thanh Hoá.
The second, third and forth places in the ranking table now belong to Khánh Hoà, Thanh Hoá and SLNA, respectively, while Hoàng Anh Gia Lai is placed seventh. — VNS