Analysis: Hanoi show class at both ends to advance
Hanoi: Hanoi FC were crowned the 2019 AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal Champions on Wednesday after a 1-0 victory over Vietnam rivals Becamex Binh Duong saw them progress to the Inter-Zone semi-finals 2-0 on aggregate.
But while a league win sandwiched in between the two Continental games made it three victories in eight days over Binh Duong and suggests a comfortable passage to the next round, the capital city side did not have it all their own way.
Hanoi: Goalkeeper Nguyen Van Cong has admitted that Hanoi FC are now dreaming of winning the 2019 AFC Cup after Wednesday’s 1-0 victory over Becamex Binh Duong saw them crowned ASEAN Zonal Champions and book an Inter-Zone semi-final date against Turkmenistan's Altyn Asyr.
The capital city side went into the all-Vietnamese clash at Hang Day Stadium with a 1-0 advantage following last week’s first leg and, after a tight first half which Hanoi shaded, the hosts broke the deadlock just after the hour when top scorer Pape Omar Faye notched his eighth goal of the campaign.
With Binh Duong needing to score twice, Hanoi could breath a little easier and they could have added to their tally, with Nguyen Quang Hai, Ngan Van Dai and Pape Kebe all missing chances as the home side comfortably saw out the closing stages.
Hanoi: Nguyen Anh Duc rued missed opportunities after Becamex Binh Duong exited the 2019 AFC Cup at the hands of domestic rivals Hanoi FC on Wednesday, with a 1-0 defeat at Hang Day Stadium ensuring the hosts advanced 2-0 on aggregate.
Binh Duong went into the second leg of the ASEAN Zonal Final needing to win in the Vietnamese capital and threatened the Hanoi goal of several occasions in the first 60 minutes but were unable to find that elusive goal.
Then, shortly after the hour, Pape Omar Faye gave the visitors a mountain to climb as the Senegalese pounced to open the scoring from a few yards out and, ultimately, seal Hanoi’s place in the Inter-Zone semi-finals.
Hanoi: Vietnam’s Hanoi FC were crowned 2019 AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal Champions on Wednesday after a 1-0 home win over domestic rivals Becamex Binh Duong in the second leg of their regional final.
Leading 1-0 from last week’s first leg, Pape Omar Faye’s second-half strike – his eighth goal of the competition – ultimately sealed a 2-0 aggregate success for Hanoi, one which earns them a spot in the Inter-Zone Semi-finals where they will now face Turkmenistan’s Altyn Asyr FC.
Kuala Lumpur: Buriram United returned to the top of the league in Thailand and Hanoi FC did likewise in Vietnam, while the title races remain close-run contests in many other countries across Southeast Asia.
With the latest from all the leagues, here’s the-AFC.com’s weekly review from the most recent round of fixtures in the ASEAN region.
Vietnam and Australia shine, Singapore salvage draw
Ho Chi Minh City: Vietnam and Australia enjoyed winning starts to their 2019 AFF U-18 Championship Group B campaign, while Singapore drew with Thailand on Wednesday.
Thailand 1-1 Singapore
Substitute Danish Qayyum Putra Shahrin Azhar gave Singapore a valuable point in their opening game when they held Thailand to a 1-1 draw.
The action was end to end with both teams eager to follow up with the blistering start to the Championship as demonstrated by teams from Group A on Tuesday, where a total of 21 goals were scored in the three matches played.