HÀ NỘI — Defender Trần Văn Kiên’s mistake cost a goal while captain Nguyễn Văn Quyết missed a penalty in Hà Nội FC’s shock 0-1 loss to Yangon United in the Asian Football Confederation’s Group F match yesterday at the Hàng Đẫy Stadium.
Playing on home turf against the team who are bottom of the group, Hà Nội were confident of an easy win as they rested their key players Nguyễn Quang Hải and Trần Đình Trọng.
The belief held for most of the first half as the hosts set the pace and launched consecutive attacks on their rivals’ goal, waiting for the opener.
Goalkeeper Kyaw Zin Htet was on constant alert.
Pape Omar Faye broke away from a counter-attack and nearly scored the opener but his low shot from 12m was saved by Htet.
Hoàng Vũ Samson’s header then went wide in the 25th minute. Young midfielder Nguyễn Thành Chung also had a header which hit the bar.
While the hosts were dominant, Kiên in an attempt to pass the ball to his goalkeeper Nguyễn Văn Công saw it intercepted by Maung Maung Win, who scored in the 42nd minute.
Hà Nội hit back strongly in the second half as they pushed Myanmar players to protect their net.
Samson and Faye increased the attacks on Yangon’s net but none of their attempts were successful.
The hosts were given the perfect opportunity to level the gap when Faye went down in the box and skipper Quyết stepped up to take the spot-kick, however he put it well wide in the 55th.
Hà Nội attacked tirelessly but could not make a dent in Yangon’s defence.
The last scare for the visiting side came in additional time when Ngân Văn Đại headed past the post.
Yangon earned their victory in the AFC Cup campaign although they maintain last place, while Hà Nội suffered their first loss and drop to second in Group F.
In another match of the group, Singapore’s Tampines Rovers FC came back to beat Naga World of Cambodia 5-1 at the National Olympic Stadium, Phnom Penh. They are on top position with their unbeaten run. Naga World are third with three points.
Hà Nội will travel to Myanmar for revenge in the next match on April 17, while Naga World fly to play Tampines Rovers in Singapore.
In today’s fixture, Vietnamese former champions Becamex Bình Dương will meet Shan United, another Myanmar club, in a Group G match.
However they will be under acting coach Nguyễn Thanh Sơn after Trần Mình Chiến suddenly announced his resignation last week, some days before their AFC Cup games.
Chiến said he thought about stepping down for a long time before making his decision. He said he did not have a voice in the team and “some players thought they were big stars and did not need to listen to me.”
"I am resigning to avoid any further impact on the team or the reputation of the club," said Chiến, the former national striker who led the side to 2018 National Cup victory.
This marks the 16th time Bình Dương has changed their head coach in 10 years, setting a record in Việt Nam’s history.
Bình Dương are now third after one win and one loss.
Other matches will see Ceres Negros FC of the Philippines versus Persija Jakarta of Indonesia. — VNS