Group F: Tampines Rovers FC 1-1 Hanoi FC
Singapore: Tampines Rovers clawed back from a goal down to snatch a 1-1 draw against Hanoi FC in a 2019 AFC Cup Group F match on Tuesday.
Hanoi had the better of a goalless first half, but it was the hosts who came closest when Daniel Bennett’s header came back off the woodwork.
Pape Omar Faye broke the deadlock for the visitors in the 62nd minute, but Jordan Webb equalised with 13 minutes to play as the sides shared the spoils to move on to four points apiece at the top of the table.
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After Hanoi’s record-breaking 10-0 win over Cambodia’s NagaWorld on Matchday One, the Vietnamese side almost got off to the perfect start in Singapore but Senegalese forward Faye was denied by a fine save by Tampines goalkeeper Syazwan Buhari in the opening minute of the game.
The visitors were controlling proceedings and spurned another great chance as the 20th minute mark approached when Ganiyu Oseni headed Nguyen Van Quyet’s cross from the right just wide from six yards out.
Hanoi had yet another chance when Van Quyet took down Faye’s delivery from the right, swivelled and fired goalwards from just inside the area, but Syazwan was equal to the challenge.
Then, completely against the run of play, Tampines almost went in front when defender Bennett headed Shahdan Sulaiman’s corner onto the post.
The hosts had the better of the opening stages of the second half without creating any clear-cut opportunities before the visitors came close when substitute Ngan Van Dai’s drive from fully 25 yards forced Syazwan to tip over as the hour approached.
But the goalkeeper then missed his attempt to punch clear Nguyen Quang Hai’s ensuing corner and Faye found himself with space at the back post to tap home the opening goal.
Tampines levelled proceedings in the 77th minute when substitute Khairil Amri found the on-rushing Webb, who, with defenders closing in on him, kept his cool to slot past Nguyen Van Cong and into the bottom left corner from the edge of the box.
The result ensures Hanoi remain ahead of Tampines on goal difference at the top of the standings, with both a point in front of Naga World, who defeated Myanmar’s Yangon United 2-1 in Tuesday’s other Group F fixture.
Hanoi will return to Vietnam to face Yangon on April 2, while Tampines travel to Phnom Penh to take on Naga World on the same day.
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