| SINGAPORE (5 Nov 2010) – Singapore held hosts Vietnam to a valuable 1-1 draw in the second match of the VFF Cup which was played at the My Dinh Stadium in Hanoi last night.
The Lions had conceded a 2-1 loss to North Korea two days earlier while Vietnam went down 2-0 to the Korean Under-23 side.
“As we expected, Vietnam played with a lot of movement and quick passing but in the end I feel we were unlucky not to win. We came very close with Masrezwan’s goal disallowed and Fazrul hitting the bar. Considering that some of these players are with the national team for the first time, I feel that they have done very well here.” said Singapore chief coach Radojko Avramovic.
“The boys have done well in the last two games but I expect the next game to be the toughest. It has been physically demanding on the players in the last few days and in my opinion, the South Koreans are the best team in this tournament.”
But this time round, Vietnam were more determined in the opening quarter as they made their presence felt at the centre of the park to pressure the Singapore defence.
In the sixth minute, Quang Thanh’s shot was blocked by goalkeeper Abdullah Sunny while in the 16th minute Vu Phong headed over the crossbar from Minh Phuong’s cross before Thanh Luong fired over the crossbar three minutes later.
But in a quick counter-attack in the 25th minute, Shi Jiayi gave Singapore the lead, making good on a cross from Aleksandar Duric.
After the break, Vietnam pushed hard for the equaliser and only found it in the 76th minute when Tai Em scored the equaliser following a goal mouth melee.
In an earlier match, North Korea were held to a 1-1 draw by the Korean U23 side – with Al Il Bom scoring for North Korea as early as the fourth minute before the Korean U23 replied with a 38th minute penalty through Jung Woo Yang.
With the draw, the Korean U23 team are ranked first, North Korea second, Singapore on third and Vietnam fourth with one more match day to play.
Both Singapore and Vietnam are using the tournament as part of their preparation for the AFF Suzuki Cup next month.