Nguyễn Văn Quyết and his teammates celebrate after scoring a goal during the first leg of the AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal final against Became Bình Dương last week. The two sides will meet in the second leg today in Hà Nội. Photo vtc.vn
HÀ NỘI Becamex Bình Dương head coach Nguyễn Thanh Sơn has expressed confidence ahead of the second leg of the AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal final against Hà Nội today despite playing away from home and having lost the first leg.
Bình Dương lost 0-1 in the first leg last week and suffered another 1-2 defeat against Hà Nội four days later in the V.League.
Speaking at a press conference yesterday, Sơn said the poor results were due in part to bad weather.
“The rainy weather strongly affected Bình Dương’s playing style in the last two matches," he said. "But tomorrow, we will have our best players and be ready to beat Hà Nội."
“We really want to go further in the tournament and we will overcome Hà Nội.”
The coach, however, understood that Hà Nội were not an easy rival with captain Nguyễn Văn Quyết playing at the peak of his abilities. Quyết scored in both of their last two meetings.
“Hà Nội are currently the best team in the V.League," Sơn said. "They have the best players and a suitable playing style."
“We have not found way to stop them yet but in the coming match, the regional final, we will work hard for a good result,” he said.
The coach named former national team midfielder Quyết as one of Hà Nội's biggest threats and the team's leader, saying that his recent form would likely result in another national team call-up.
Young striker Nguyễn Tiến Linh also took part in the press conference and agreed with Sơn’s assessment.
“Quyết is the soul of the team,” Linh said. "He has a large influence on all the players. I think we should work out a way to prevent him from influencing the game."
“Coming back after my injury, I hope to have something great for Bình Dương and I also expect to score tomorrow," he said. "I want a win for Bình Dương.”
On the home side, Midfielder Đỗ Hùng Dũng said Hà Nội were united and have many quality players besides Quyết. It would be a mistake for Bình Dương to focus all of their attention on Quyết, Dũng said. Midfielder Nguyễn Quang Hải and striker Ngân Văn Đại are just as capable of creating a moment of magic.
His coach Chu Đình Nghiêm said that after several seasons of poor results against Bình Dương, Hà Nội now knows how to defeat them. This experience yielded wins on both of their last meetings.
“While other teams including Bình Dương develop their strength depending on their foreign players, Hà Nội focuses on building a style that can change flexibly when we face different teams,” he said.
“Bình Dương have strong players and they are good with a counter-attacking style," he said. "Through the two previous matches we know that we have to concentrate 100 per cent and limit long balls.”
Nghiêm said he did not want his players to pay attention to the high stakes of the match. Playing with freedom would let the attack flow and be more effective.
“We are always pursuing nice football. We also want to win the match. We will play with all we have to go the furthest in this tournament,” said Nghiêm, who recently learned that important defender Trần Đình Trọng will be out of action for nine months.
Trọng suffered a leg injury and had surgery last month. After a check in Singapore yesterday, doctors said he would not be back on the field until next summer.
He will also be missed by the national team, which will compete in the Southeast Asian Games in the Philippines this November.
The second leg of the final will kicked off at 7pm at Hàng Đẫy Stadium in Hà Nội. The winner will play Altyn Asyr from Turkmenistan in the Inter-zone Semi-final across two legs on August 20 and 27. VNS