V.League preview: HCM City to hold onto top spot?

Friday, 2019-04-19 16:35:52
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Chung Hae-seong's Ho Chi Minh City are showing a brilliant form in the 2019 V.League. (Photo: VPF)
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NDO – Title frontrunners Ho Chi Minh City are expected to earn an easy win and solidify their grip at the top of the table as they only have to take on newly promoted Viettel in match day 6 of the 2019 V.League this weekend.

HCM City are experiencing sweet days in the V.League under the dynasty of Republic of Korea manager Chung Hae-seong. After the first five rounds, the southern team, who finished third from bottom last season, have maintained their lead in the title race and are two points clear at the top, following an amazing unbeaten run of four wins and one draw.

The home-field advantage and an effective playing style, together with their superior league experience, allow Chung’s players and their fans to look towards a commanding victory over the V.League newbies, who have conceded three defeats out of their last five matches.

Despite having rescued themselves from the relegation zone after a narrow 1-0 triumph against Nam Dinh FC, there is little chance for Lee Heung-sil’s Viettel FC to create a miracle in their away game at in-form HCM City.

Second-placed Hanoi FC and third-placed Hai Phong FC will clash in the most anticipated fixture of match day 6 as they seek to dethrone HCM City off top position.

Hanoi FC (in blue) are expected to have a tough match against Hai Phong FC. (Photo: VPF)

Hanoi FC have performed brilliantly at home this season with two commanding triumphs over Quang Ninh Coal (5-0) and Song Lam Nghe An (4-0). In addition, the reigning champions are in good mood following their recent victory against Myanmar’s Yangon United in the AFC Cup arena. Therefore, manager Chu Dinh Nghiem’s side stand a greater chance to win while hosting Hai Phong FC at Hang Day Stadium. However, with their impressive four-game unbeaten streak (three wins and one draw), manager Truong Viet Hoang’s troops are also predicted to pose a tough challenge to the home side’s three-point ambition.

Hoang Anh Gia Lai will play guest to second-from-bottom Quang Nam FC, with their confidence strongly boosted by their match day 5 win against Quang Ninh Coal, which put an end to an alarming three-game losing run of Van Toan and his teammates. Facing a Quang Nam side currently in crisis, manager Duong Minh Ninh’s players are highly favoured to achieve a positive result to mark their comeback to the title race.

In the other matches, SHB Da Nang and Thanh Hoa FC are prone to respective draws against Song Lam Nghe An and Sanna Khanh Hoa BVN, despite their home-field advantage. Meanwhile, Nam Dinh FC, who survived the relegation playoff last season, are likely to concede a home defeat to former champions Becamex Binh Duong right at Thien Truong Stadium.