City fail to take advantage of Hà Nội's earlier slip up as they are held 1-1 by a ten-man Quảng Nam at a rain soaked Thống Nhất

Once again Coach Chung Hae-soung was forced to ring the changes in the starting X1 to face a Quảng Nam side desperate for points In came Sầm Ngọc Đức (7), Matias (11) and Vũ Ngọc Thịnh (20) in place of Ngô Tùng Quốc (2), Kesley (77) and the suspended Christian (88) who collected his third yellow card of the season in the victory over S. Khánh Hòa the previous Monday evening.  Missing also from the squad was No. 28 Phạm Công Hiển following his red card in the same game.

A rainy day in Hồ Chí Minh probably influenced the size of the attendance which was a disappointing 3,000.  Those who did attend were full of optimism of a City victory and the atmosphere initially belied the size of the crowd.

City were aiming to extend their unbeaten run at home.  A run that had seen City yet to concede in nearly 300 minutes of football.  

Unlike previous games where City had adopted a more cautious approach to the start, City seemed more upbeat and faster in their movement and crisper in their passing.  The wet surface was not helping but the confidence that seems to be running through the side was evident.  It was therefore no surprise that it was City who were to draw first blood.  On 18 minutes, Văn Thuận (14) found Quang Nam (18) on City's left.  His run and cross into the box was met by the right foot of stiker Matias (11) who had managed to sneak between two Quảng Nam defenders, Thiago (5) and Đinh Viết Tú (30).  Although not the cleanest strike the ball found its way past Phạm Văn Cường in the Quảng Nam goal.  1-0 City and the prospect of putting daylight between City and Hà Nội seemed a real possibility, even at this early stage.

However, it was the visitors who were to fashion the game's next real opportunity.  A free kick on Quảng Nam's left taken by Viết Tú (30) found the head of Matias.  His defensive header was misplaced and almost fell kindly for Đào Duy Khánh (15).  Luckily for City, and Matias, Nguyễn Hữu Tuấn (15) got in the way of any effort and Matias was able to find Văn Thuận (14) who won City a free kick.

One-nil really should have become two on 32 minutes and once again it was that man Văn Thuận who was involved.  His through pass put Matias clear.  Unfortunately for both player and club his effort was dragged narrowly wide of the visitor's post.

Three minutes later and the run of not conceding at home was over.  A long Quảng Nam clearance found Junior Claudecir (89) in the clear.  Vũ Ngọc Thịnh (20), in an effort to prevent an opening pulled the striker to the ground and the referee did not hesitate to point to the penalty spot.  Ngọc Thịnh also received a yellow card for his efforts.  Up stepped Đinh Thanh Trung (7) who hit the ball high into the City net.  1-1.  City had gone 305 minutes before conceding. Both teams seemed content to play out the remainder of the half which ended all square.


Half Time : Ho Chi Minh City FC 1 Quảng Nam FC 1

City started the second period as they started the first, on the front foot and on 50 minutes created the second half's first opportunity.  Phạm Văn Thành (99) found Sầm Ngọc Đức (7) inside the box.  His turn and shot was well saved by the Quảng Nam goal stopper.  Then on 58 minutes and for the second match running a player received a red card.  This time it went to the opponents No. 9 Hà Minh Tuấn who elbowed City's Văn Thuận in the face.  Strangely the referee showed a second yellow rather than a straight red which the offence warranted. 


In an attempt to take advantage of the numerical superiority and to inject some pace into the attack, Coach Chung Hae-soung introduced on 63 minutes, No 94 Joel who had recovered from his injury sustained against Hà Nội replacing Võ Út Cường (56).  Two minutes later and substitute number 2 was being made.  This time it was the result of an injury to keeper Nguyễn Thanh Thắng who once again had put in an impressive performance.  His replacement No. 25 Nguyễn Thanh Diệp making his first appearance of the season.


Despite the increased ball possession that City enjoyed, and as per the previous match, it was the ten men who almost stole the points.  On 82 minutes Junior Claudecir put Gabriel (8) through on goal.  His effort was well saved by the new keeper Thanh Diệp.  60 seconds later and Thanh Diệp was in the thick of the action again.  A Quảng Nam free kick taken by Thanh Trung (7) saw a coming together of Matias and Gabriel.  Matias appearing to pull the stikers shirt.  Once again, the referee did not hesitate to point to the spot.  This time however, City's stand in keeper was able to save Thanh Trung's spot kick.

Spurred on by this escape, City roared forward in an attempt to secure all three points.  Coach Chung Hae-soung introduced No. 8 Thanh Bình replacing No 81 Vũ Anh Tuấn.  On 87 minutes a City free kick taken by Văn Thuận was floated into the box.  Quảng Nam's keeper flapped at the ball and inexplicably chased the loose ball to the edge of the area where it was retrieved by Sầm Ngọc Đức.  His cross was met by the head of Matias but unfortunately his header went wide.

93 minutes and City fashioned another chance.  A corner hit low into the visitor's box was met once again by Matias.  This time his turn and shot went narrowly over the bar.

Full Time : Ho Chi Minh City 1 Quảng Nam FC 1


HCMC FC : 1. Thanh Thắng (25. Thanh Diệp 63mins), 7. Ngọc Đức, 81 Vũ Anh Tuấn (8. Thanh Bình 83mins), 15. Hữu Tuấn, 56. Út Cường (94. Joel 63 mins), 71. Công Thành, 20. Ngọc Thịnh, 14. Văn Thuận, 99. Văn Thành, 18. Quang Nam, 11. Matias. 


Quảng Nam: 25. Văn Cường, 30. Viết Tú, 5. Thiago, 3. Tấn Sinh, 22. Văn Hà, 7. Thanh Trung, 6. Hữu Phước, 29. Huy Hùng, 8. Davis Dos Santos, 9. Minh Tuấn, 89. Claudecir.

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©2018 by Darren Smale