V.League 1-2021 Matchweek 8

Van Toan and Cong Phuong bring HAGL back to top of the table

Friday, 2021-04-09 09:31:41
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HAGL's Nguyen Van Toan is joining SHB Da Nang's Rafaelson and Quang Ninh Coal's Eydison to lead the race to be the season's top scorer with five goals for each. (Photo: VPF)
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NDO – Hoang Anh Gia Lai FC (HAGL) have resumed their hold on top of the V.League 1 table after grabbing the full three points with a 2-0 away win against SHB Da Nang at Hoa Xuan Stadium on April 8.

>>> HAGL extend unbeaten run with win against Hai Phong FC

>>> Hoang Anh Gia Lai scores hat-trick of awards in V.League 1-2021

Forwards Nguyen Van Toan and Nguyen Cong Phuong took centre stage again by finding the back of the net in the second half to help Kiatisuk Senamuang’s side extend their unbeaten run to seven matches.

The fact that both teams boasted a chance to lead the title race with a victory led to the first half passing by with a scarcity of scoring opportunities.

Coincidentally, about two thirds of HAGL’s goals thus far this season came after halftime. Just two minutes into the second half, HAGL broke the deadlock thanks to a powerful low drive by Van Toan from 25 metres, which proved decisive and surprising enough to beat goalkeeper Tuan Manh.

With his fifth goal since the beginning of the season, Van Toan has risen to join Rafaelson (SHB Da Nang) and Eydison (Quang Ninh Coal) as the frontrunners in the race to be the top scorer of V.League 1-2021.

HAGL's Nguyen Cong Phuong (R) celebrates scoring their second goal. (Photo: VPF)

In the 70th minute, HAGL were awarded a penalty as a result of a handball by Van Do on the SHB Da Nang side. From the spot, Cong Phuong made no mistake in defeating goalie Tuan Manh with a low strike toward the right bottom corner to increase his scoring tally to three.

The fourth consecutive triumph has brought Kiatisuk’s troops back to the top of the standings with 19 points, pushing Quang Ninh Coal into second place with one point fewer. HAGL will need to win the next three games to match their record run of seven successive victories established in the 2004 season.

Notably, by thrashing SHB Da Nang 2-0, HAGL has now gone five matches without conceding a goal – an unprecedented result in the team’s history. In the previous four league games, they were held 0-0 by Hong Linh Ha Tinh before finishing off Viettel 3-0, Ho Chi Minh City 3-0 and Hai Phong FC 2-0.

On the same day, Hai Phong FC conceded three unanswered goals away against Thanh Hoa FC, thus dropping to 11th place in the table only three points clear of bottom-placed Saigon FC. This was the fourth consecutive defeat for Pham Anh Tuan’s side in this year’s V.League 1 season.

Ho Chi Minh City FC have put an end to their three-game losing run in V.League 1-2021. (Photo: VPF)

At Thong Nhat Stadium, Ho Chi Minh City quenched their thirst for victory following a three-game losing run as three goals by Barros (54’), Tung Quoc (73’) and Lee Nguyen (penalty, 89’) edged them past Song Lam Nghe An with a score of 3-0.

Striker Nguyen Tien Linh scored a hat-trick (20’, 59’, 77’) as former champions Becamex Binh Duong coursed through Nam Dinh FC 4-3 at home to climb to fifth position with 13 points.

V.League 1-2021 Table - Matchweek 8