Football Tribe SEA Editor
Joint-bottom side SHB Da Nang finally got their 2020 V.League 1 season up and running in some emphatic fashion, after they dismantled rivals Quang Nam FC 6-1 at the Hoa Xuan Stadium. Le Huynh Duc’s men went rampant on Thursday’s derby showdown, with their three foreign imports having a field day against the bewildered 2017 V.League 1 champions.
Da Nang went into Thursday’s Central Vietnam Derby in desperate need for three points, having lost all 3 of their league matches so far. The pressure was on Huynh Duc to start the engines on Da Nang’s season and with Quang Nam making that short one hour and 16 minute drive up from Tam Ky, a derby defeat would surely force the Da Nang management into a decision.
The match started off as an equal encounter between two close rivals, as expected from derby matches like these. Croatian Igor Jelic gave Da Nang the lead in the 15th minute with an excellent free-kick that went through the grasps of Pham Van Cuong, the Quang Nam goalie. However, in the 30th minute, Quang Nam equalized through Papa Ibou Kebe, with the on-loan Hanoi FC striker taking advantage of a shot deflected by Da Nang goalie Nguyen Tuan Manh to smash in the rebound. Despite being pegged back, Da Nang kept their calm and kept on attacking, and they soon regained the lead in the 43rd minute. Ismahil Akinade sent a pin-point pass towards Grace Tanda, which the Swede easily capped off with a shot that went beyond Van Cuong’s reaches. 2-1 Da Nang and that was the score as the referee blew for half-time.
Da Nang flew out of the traps straight away in the second half and barely a few seconds in, they made it 3-1. Akinade broke into the Quang Nam defense before the former Ho Chi Minh City FC striker easily defeated Van Cuong with a well-timed shot.
The men in orange weren’t finished there, however. They kept on pressing and attacking the now battered Quang Nam defense and in a space of 8 minutes, Huynh Duc’s charges scored two goals that surely put the game beyond Quang Nam’s reach. A powerful strike from Phan Van Long in the 62nd minute made it 4-1, before Akinade completed his brace in the 70th minute with a close-ranged header to make it 5-1 Da Nang. At this point, Quang Nam had already lost to of their defenders to injury – both Dinh Viet Tu and Nguyen Anh Hung having being subbed off – and a third defender, Lucas Rocha, was shouldering an injury of his own as well. Quang Nam had used up all of their subs at that point though, so Rocha had to force himself to complete the game.
And Da Nang managed to exploit Rocha’s condition very well, as in the 85th minute A Mit managed to beat Rocha in a 1-on-1 encounter, allowing the midfielder to score Da Nang’s sixth of the game. 6-1 and that’s all she wrote as the referee blew for full-time. The crushing win came as a huge relief for Da Nang, their fans, and Huynh Duc, who finally got his team up and running in some style.
Another demolition job made itself known at the Go Dau Stadium, as hosts Becamex Binh Duong ran rampant against visiting Hai Phong FC. A late brace from Ho Sy Gap accompanied goals from Ho Tan Tai, Nguyen Tien Linh, and Tran Duy Khanh as Binh Duong smashed Hai Phong 5-0, a result that sent them 2nd in the league. Meanwhile, in Hanoi, a late equalizer from Ho Khac Ngoc ensured Viettel FC’s takeover of the V.League 1 summit, after the Red Tornado had forced Than Quang Ninh to a 1-1 draw.
The fourth round of the 2020 V.League 1 continues on Friday with two more exciting derby matches. Song Lam Nghe An made that 2 hour and 48 minute drive from Vinh for an intriguing derby encounter with bottom side Thanh Hoa FC, who have just sacked their head coach Fabio Lopez. Friday’s other derby match sees a battle of supremacy in Ho Chi Minh City, with the Ho Chi Minh Derby between dethroned leaders Ho Chi Minh City and Sai Gon FC. The battle between the city’s established football team against their relatively new counterparts promises to be an exciting clash as both teams found themselves in the top half of the V.League 1 table, with Ho Chi Minh City seeking to reclaim their throne and Sai Gon seeking to threaten the league’s more established teams.
Friday’s other action sees Hoang Anh Gia Lai hosting Duoc Nam Ha Nam Dinh at the Pleiku Stadium, while defending champions Hanoi travel to Ha Tinh for an encounter against newly promoted Hong Linh Ha Tinh. Interestingly, Ha Tinh were formed as Hanoi’s reserve team, before the team found themselves rebranded and relocated to Ha Tinh Province in 2019.