|Quảng Nam vs Hải Phòng in the V.League 1 over the weekend. Quảng Nam were relegated to the V.League 2 despite winning 4-2. Photo goal.com|
HÀ NỘI — Quảng Nam were relegated to the V.League 2 despite beating Hải Phòng 4-2 in the last match of the group of six teams fighting to avoid relegation at Lạch Tray Stadium on Saturday.
To stay in the V.League 1, Quang Nam needed a four-goal if Nam Dinh drew against Song Lam Nghe An, or a win of any kind if the northern side lost at Vinh Stadium.
Quảng Nam opened the scoring in the third minute and 25 minutes in were three up, putting great pressure on Nam Định, who were drawing 1-1 with Sông Lam Nghệ An at the time. At that point, one more goal for Quảng Nam would have seen Nam Định relegated if their match stayed level.
However, there were no more goals in either match in the opening period.
In the second half, Hải Phòng bounced back and scored a goal to shorten the gap to 3-1 in the 88th minute thanks to Gustavo Santos.
Quảng Nam quickly replied to make it 4-1 but were unable to get the crucial fifth goal and their fate was sealed when Joseph Mpande scored for Hai Phong late on, leaving them 4-2 winners but relegated by virtue of Nam Định's 1-1 draw at Vinh Stadium.
Both sides are on 18 points but Nam Định stayed up due to their superior goal difference.
After six years of playing in the V.League 1 and winning the 2017 title, Quảng Nam have to return to the second tier.
After the match, coach Phạm Hồng Phú of Nam Định could not hide his emotion.
"When the referee blew the whistle and we knew the score of the Quảng Nam – Hải Phòng match, it was not only us, but tens of thousands of Nam Địnhs fans jumped for the joy as our team's efforts during the season had finally been successful," said Phú.
"We just want to rest now, enjoy our feeling of victory before thinking about changes in the future,” he added.
In other news, Bình Định won the V.League 2 on Saturday with a 1-0 win over Pho Hien and were promoted to the V.League 1. — VNS