30th January 2019

Trần Phi Sơn Injury Update - According to reports on bongdaplus.vn today, influential City play maker Phi Sơn will not be receiving treatment until after the Tet holiday. With an expected recovery period of 5 months we can not realistically expect to see the little genius until July/August 2019.

Read the full story (in Vietnamese) here

29th January 2019

There have been some notable changes to the fixture list since its first release.  Most notably date wise.  Previously there were a majority of games being played on a Sunday.  This (for the first half of the season) has been amended to either Friday evening or Saturday.  Notable changes are : City's first game of the season at home to Hải Phòng FC has been moved from Saturday 23rd February to Sunday 24th.  Kick Off time to be confirmed.  Our first away game at Hoàng Anh Gia Lai FC has moved from Saturday 2nd March to Friday 1st March.  Other notable date changes are : City's derby against Sài Gòn FC has moved from Sunday 7th April to Saturday 6th.  The trip to current champions Hà Nội FC has been moved from Sunday 28th April to Saturday 27th.  The second half of the season has yet to be confirmed although the order of the games appear to have been switched.  We no longer appear to finish the season at Hải Phòng FC on 29th September but rather Thanh Hoa.  I expect further amendments to be made to fixtures throughout the season to cater for TV and the personal whims of the VPF.  This website will endeavor to keep all updated with any changes once confirmed.

25th January 2019

City lost their 3rd/4th Place Play Off match in the Thiên long Tournament 2019 going down 0-2 against fellow V-League 1 side Sanna Khánh Hòa.  Two first half goals were enough to settle this tie.  The result meant that City finished 4th overall in the tournament.  Results wise, out of four games against fellow V-League 1 sides, City were only able to defeat Sài Gòn FC.  The other victory coming against semi-professional side African Team of Vietnam.  The tournament did prove valuable in other areas than match fitness.  It allowed new coach Chung Hae Soung to try a selection of formations and players.  Last season's top goal scorer Matias sat out the entire tournament for precautionary measures.  Trần Phi Sơn missed the tournament as he receives treatment on his ankle injury.  Vũ Quang Nam was another player to miss out.  There were knocks for Kesley, Joel and in the last match, Vũ Ngọc Thịnh.  Although it is suggested that, apart from the much reported injury to  Phi Sơn, the others mentioned should all be cleared by the start of the new V-League 1 season on 23rd February.

The opening 15 minutes were reminiscent of the opening rounds of a boxing match with both teams testing each other's defense without really creating much.  City did however fashion an opening during this period but neither Võ Lý (75) or Văn Thanh (86) were able to take advantage.  Văn Thanh was looking lively on the right wing and has developed with each game.  The first real chance fell to Sanna Khánh Hòa in the 24th minute.  However the header was easily saved by Thanh Diệp (25) playing in the City goal.  The game finally burst into life during a 5 minute period.  On 30 minutes, a push at the back post by Hữu Tuấn (15) was spotted by the ref who awarded Sanna Khánh Hòa a penalty which was converted.  One-nil very quickly became two when on 34 minutes a long range effort completely caught out keeper Diệp (25) and found its way into the City goal.  On 36 minutes it should have been three.  A free header in the box was headed over by Khánh Hòa's number 23.  City were rocking at this point.  On the verge of half time City's Võ Lý (75) did manage to get in a shot.  However, his effort was easily saved.  Half Time 0-1

Coach Chung Hae Soung made three changes for the start of the second half - Đào Quốc Gia (30), Ngọc Đức(7) and Ngọc Thịnh (20) replacing A Sân (22), Christian (88) and Hải Anh (23).  City started the second half on a more positive footing.  In the 48th minuted Võ Lý (75) had an effort which was both weak and wide.  City's best chance thus far fell to perhaps the wrong player.  The ball was flighted into the Khánh Hòa box and found Ngọc Thịnh (20) all alone on the back post.  However, he was to screw his shot wide and into the side netting.  A period of City pressure was to follow and were denied a clear penalty on 57 minutes.  The referee failing to spot a clear handball.  On 63 minutes Văn Thanh (86) appeared to pick up a knock and was replaced by Minh Trung (17).  Indeed, Minh Trung almost provided an instant impact on 68 minutes.  However his shot was saved.  Khánh Hòa almost made it 0-3 on 70 minutes but their effort hitting the bar.  City were pushing hard and trying to get back into the game as time began to run out.  On 80 minutes Võ Lý (75) tried an over head kick but his effort was to hit the bar and go over.  Thanh Bình (8) came on to replace Anh Tuấn (81) and tried to get involved.  However, there were to be no more clear cut chances for City.  Final Score 0-2

23rd January 2019

City lost their Thiên long Tournament Semi-Final clash against fellow V-League 1 side Than Quảng Ninh 0-1 due to a deflected own goal by City’s Vũ Ngọc Thịnh (20)in the 36th minute. The ball looping over the stranded Nguyễn Thanh Thắng (1) in the City goal.  It was an unfortunate moment for Ngọc Thịnh who, apart from that moment, had a steady performance in City's defence.  

22nd January 2019

City have today completed the signings of of Nguyen Cong Thanh from XSKT Cần Thơ and Nguyen Tang Tien from Hoàng Anh Gia Lai. Both players have been with the club on trial and have participated in the current Thiên Long Tournament. Cong Thanh has been wearing the no. 71 shirt and Tang Tien the no. 4.  www.hcmcfc.net would like to welcome both players to Vietnam's greatest team.

21st January 2019

City returned to winning ways with a hard thought 1-0 victory over the African Team Vietnam.  Victory has ensured that City qualify for the Semi Finals of the Thiên Long Tournament .


More to follow ...... 

19th January 2019

A much changed City team lost their latest game in the Thiên Long Tournament going down 0-2 to a strong Quảng Nam side.  The coach Chung Hae Soung opted to make nine changes from the starting line up that defeated Sài Gòn on Thursday evening and changed the playing system from 4-4-2 to a more 4-2-3-1 formation.  There were starts for a number of the new players with Lê Hoàng Thiên (19) signed from Sài Gòn having a particularly good game in midfield.  There were also notable performances from Thanh Bình (8), Minh Trung (17) and another new boy Vũ Ngọc Thịnh (20) recently signed from Hải Phòng.  Hải Anh (23) at times cut a lonely figure upfront playing as a lone striker and struggled, particularly in the first half, to get into the game.

The pattern for the first half was established in the first minute.  City lost possession in the centre of the park, Quảng Nam were able to break but failed to take advantage of their opportunity.  Four minutes in and it was Ngọc Thịnh's (20) turn to lose possession.  Once again, Quảng Nam broke and once again failed to take advantage.  


City's first opportunity came in the 10th minute and was the result of good build up play between Ngọc Đức (7) and Văn Thuận (14). Unfortunately the latter's shot was misplaced.  

Considering Quảng Nam's attacking dominance, it was not until the 31st minuted that City keeper Thanh Diệp (25) was called into action.  A slip on the edge of the City box by newsigning Tăng Tiến (4) allowed Quảng Nam the opportunity to cross the ball with the resultant header being well saved by Thanh Diệp.  Another new signing Hoàng Thiên (19) was trying to influence play in the centre and was being supported by Thanh Bình (8).  However, there efforts were not bearing fruit as all too often play continued to break down.  City had to wait until the 42nd minute for their next real opportunity,  Again Hoàng Thiên (19) was involved.  Breaking quickly and good inter-linking play between Hải Anh (23), Văn Thuận (14) and Ngọc Đức (7) sawa the ball crossed into the opponents area.  Unfortunately, Hoàng Thiên (19) was unable to finish the move that he had initially started.  There was just enough time for Quảng Nam to both fashion and waste another opportunity before the hal time whistle blew.  Half Time 0-0

The second half began as the first had ended and it was to no surprise when Quảng Nam took the lead on 50 minutes.  City lost possession in midfield allowing Quảng Nam to break.  The resultant cross was scrambled into the City net after the initial shot had been saved by keeper Thanh Diệp (25).  Kesley (77) who had entered the fray at half time to support Hải Anh (23) was dropping deeper in an attempt to influence play.  On the hour, City suddenly burst into life and were to fashion two opportunities in as many minutes.  First, after good work on the edge of the box, the ball fell to Kesley (77) who was unable to beat the keeper at the near post.  The ball was to break loose and after more controlled passing, found it's way to the feet of Hoàng Thiên (19).  He too found his effort saved by the Quảng Nam keeper.  On 66 minutes, Võ Lý (75) who had come on to replace Hải Anh (23), broke free.  Unfortunately, his cross went right across the goal with no City player being able to convert the opening.  Kesley (77) had a free header saved on 80 minutes.  However. it was Quảng Nam who were to score the next goal on 90+1 minutes to effectively kill the game.  There was just enough tim,e for the impressive Hoàng Thiên (19) to fashion his own opportunity but under pressure from two defenders he was unable to score. 


Full Time Ho Chi Minh City 0-2 Quảng Nam

17th January 2019

City won their opening fixture in the Thiên Long Tournament tonight against City rivals Sài Gòn FC.  Goals from Văn Thanh (81) on 22mins and Kesley (77) on 45+2mins were enough to see City home.  Both goals were well taken efforts. The first came from a nice flick on by Kesley (77) to Văn Thanh who cut inside from the right hand side and slotted the ball home in the corner of the Sài Gòn goal.  Kesley's goal was the result of a long kick down the middle which found the striker in space.  The rest was down to individual skill and persistence as he beat off a couple of challenges before finding the back of the net.  The result was nothing more than City deserved as they generally dominated play and created several other good openings on the night.  

On 10 minutes Kesley was found with space within the box after good work down the left hand side involving Công Hiển (28) and recent signing from CLB Huế Võ Lý (75).  However, Kesley was unable to convert the chance screwing the ball wide.  City continued to control play winning multiple free kicks in the Sài Gòn half.   Công Hiển was proving hard to pin down and he appeared to be playing in more of a floating role switching wings.  At the back Hữu Tuấn (15) was a controlling influence alongside another new boy Christian (88) signed from SHB Đà Nẵng FC,  Christian's strength, Hữu Tuấn's positional sense plus a more composed performance from Ngọc Đức (7) was enough to snub out any potential threat that Sài Gòn, who fielded City old boy Da Sylva in their ranks, had to offer.  It was therefore no surprise when City took the lead on 22 minutes.  Good link up play down the left hand side involving Kesley who flicked the ball on to Văn Thanh.  He was able to beat off the defenders challenge and had the presence of mind to cut inside and slot the ball home ... 1-0 to City.  One almost became two on 36 minutes as again, good link up play between Công Hiển, Văn Thanh (86) and Võ Lý saw the latter shoot wide.  On 40 minutes, more link up play, this time between Kesley and another new boy Lam (71) saw the Sài Gòn keeper forced into action.  1-0 did deservedly become 2-0 on the stroke of half time as Kesley raced away, beat off two challenges and made no mistake in front of goal.  Half Time HCMC FC 2 Sài Gòn FC 0

The second half was pretty much a repeat of the first.  Both teams made several changes to their teams as is the way of friendly matches.  City continued to press forward with new boy Joel (94) joining the action and instantly showing his class.  On 52 minutes he was was able to hold the ball up, swivel and cut through the middle. However, once in the box, instead of shooting he passed to an unmarked Võ Lý who unfortunately fired over.  Sài Gòn's only real opening came in the 85th minute when old boy Da Sylva found himself unmarked in the middle of the City box.  His header however was well saved by new keeper Thanh Thắng, signed from FLC Thanh Hóa, who had a steady performance in the City goal.

Two possible sour notes from the evening were slight injuries to Christian who left the game during the first half and what at the time looked like a ham sting injury to Joel on 70 minutes.  However, it is believed that neither injury is serious, Christian could well feature on Saturday against Quảng Nam and Joel's injury should see him fit and ready to go in 2-3 weeks. 

15th January 2019

HCMC FC’s fixtures for next weeks THIÊN LONG TOURNAMENT have been released and as expected we are in group B

v CLB Sài Gòn at 17h00 on 17/1/2019.

v CLB Quảng Nam at 17h00 on 19/1/2019

v African Team VN at 15h00 On 21/1/2019

13th January 2019

Final Score : HCMC FC 3 Melaka United 1 Scorers Võ Lý (75) 39 mins, A San (22) 41 mins and Joel Vinicius (94) on 85. A thoroughly professional performance in baking hot conditions. That makes it 5 from 5 for the new coach. Full Report to follow.

10th January 2019

Player Injury News - Inspirational midfielder Phi Sơn will be out for up to 5 months due to an ankle injury picked up at the end of last season.  Phi Sơn will travel to South Korea for treatment.  Everyone at www.hcmcfc.net and the club wishes him a full and speedy recovery.

10th January 2019

The following teams have now been confirmed for the The Thao Thiên Long Tournament at Thăng Long.  Apart from HCMC FC, Than Quảng Ninh, Thanh Hoá, Quảng Nam, Khánh Hoà BVN, CLB Sài Gòn, Long An and the African Team of Vietnam will be taking part.

8th January 2019

The draw for the V League fixtures were drawn at 16:00 today.  City's first game will be against Hải Phòng and is to to be played on the weekend of 24/25 February 2019.  However, the venue for this game has still to be decided due to the ongoing pitch work at Thống Nhất Stadium.  It is being suggested that the game could be played at Bà Rịa.  The draw for the Cup was also made and City were drawn away to V League 2 new boys Phố Hiến FC.  The overall draw was potentially unkind to City as victory over Phố Hiến FC could see us travelling back to Hanoi to play Viettel FC. This could be followed with a trip to either Thanh Hóa, Hải Phòng or Đà Nẵng. Then back to Hanoi.

8th January 2019

Friendly Final Score : HCMC FC 3 Bình Phước 0.  Goals from Kelsey, VõLý and Lê Hoàng Thiên made it 4 wins for 4 friendlies.  Played in gloomy conditions under the floodlights at Sân vận động Bà Rịa, it was at times difficult to see who was who as both teams were wearing similar kits.  A good workout for City though with some excellent interaction play between midfield and attack.  Matias sat out the game after twisting his ankle in training on Monday.  Joel came on during the second half and impressed immediately with his link up play.

5th January 2019

Final Score HCMC FC 3 African Team of Vietnam 0. Scorers Matias, Kesley and Hải Anh. City won their third friendly in a row today at the Sân vận động Bà Rịa in what can only be described at times to be a very physical workout indeed!!  The African team can be accused of some over zealous challenges at times which could have resulted in player injuries.  City's next game is on Wednesday 9th January against V League 2 side Bình Phước.  Also at Sân vận động Bà Rịa.  Kick Off is again 15:15

4th January 2019

FLC Thanh Hóa defender Ngô Hoàng Thịnh today joined City on a two year contract. Ngô played 56 gamesfor Thanh Hóa scoring 4 times after arriving from Sông Lam Nghệ An in 2016. His record at Sông Lam Nghệ An was played 32 scoring 3 times. He has also made 3 appearances for Vietnam’s U23 side scoring 1 goal.  www.hcmcfc.net would like to welcome Ngô Hoàng Thịnh to Vietnam's greatest team.

2nd January 2019

Current SHB Đà Nẵng right back Bùi Văn Long is reportedly having trials with HCMC FC.  The 30 year old made 31 apps last season for SHB Đà Nẵng, scoring once, after joining them from Hoàng Anh Gia Lai F.C. in 2016 where he made 77 apps, again scoring once.  He has made 2 apps for Vietnam.

2nd January 2019

Goal.vn are reporting the dates for the new 2019 season.  According to the article, the season will kick off on 3rd March 2019 with the Super Cup match and finish on 3rd November 2019 with the National Cup Final. The 2019 National Cup is due to begin on 10th March, the First Division on 30th March and the V.League is due to begin on Sunday 31st March 2019.  

The full article (in Vietnamese) can be read here and includes a piece on Hà Nội FC's ground SVĐ Hàng Đẫy which is due for redevelopment.

1st January 2019

The club have announced two possible friendlies - both to be played at Bà Rịa - Vũng Tàu on 9th/10th January. One against an unnamed foreign team and one against CLB Bình Phước.

©2018 by Darren Smale