Vietnamese forward Lê Công Vinh was one of five ASEAN football legends honoured by AFC. Photo: the-afc.com
HÀ NỘI — The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) has honoured Vietnamese footballer Lê Công Vinh as one of five ASEAN legends on its Facebook page.
Striker Vinh won 85 national team caps from 2004-16 and netted 51 goals, making him one of ASEAN’s top five scorers. He also has the most caps and goals in Vietnamese national team history.
He scored the decisive goal in Việt Nam’s 2-1 win over Thailand in the AFF Cup final in December 2008, bringing home the country's first-ever regional championship.
Lê Công VInh is the best Vietnamese footballer in history. Photo bongdaplus.vn
At club level, Vinh also dominated.
In 14 years playing for Sông Lam Nghệ An, Hà Nội T&T (now Hà Nội FC), Hà Nội ACB (dissolved) and Becamex Bình Dương, the Nghệ An Province-born player netted 120 goals. With his clubs, he earned two V.League 1 titles and one National Cup. He was voted best player of the year in 2004, 2006 and 2007.
Vinh, now 34, was the first Vietnamese player to play abroad and the first to play in Europe. He played for Leixoes SC in Portugal in 2009 and Consadole Sapporo in Japan in 2013.
Lê Công Vinh established a community football academy in HCM City after his retirement. Photo of Công Vinh
Vinh retired in 2016 and became the first president of HCM City FC in 2017. He resigned a year later.
He now runs the CV9 community football academy in HCM City.
The AFC named Vinh together with midfielder Kiatisuk Senamuang of Thailand, defender Soh Chin Aun of Malaysia, striker Bambang Pamungkas of Indonesia and Filipino goalkeeper Neil Etheridge. Among them, only Etheridge is still playing. — VNS