Hosts Binh Duong took a surprise 2-0 win over Khanh Hoa in the opener of the final round of the U21 National Football Tournament at Go Dau Stadium on Thursday.
The opening ceremony of the final round of the 13th Thanh Nien-sponsored football event was attended by senior officials of the Vietnam Football Federation, Binh Duong Province, the Vietnam Youth Federation, the General Department of Physical Training and Sports, Thanh Nien newspaper and other sponsors.
Addressing the ceremony, Nguyen Van Hiep, Deputy Chairman of the Binh Duong People’s Committee praised the U21 football tournament as a quality event that can help improve the talent of young footballers.
Hiep said Binh Duong would do its best to ensure a safe competition.
Dang Thanh Tinh, Thanh Nien’s Deputy Editor-in-chief, said the Thanh Nien-sponsored U21 football competition was established in 1997 and has been held in different localities around the country.
It has been a good place for young players to show their abilities and for the coaches to find young talents for the U23 and national teams, he said.
On behalf on the organizers, Tinh thanked Binh Duong Province authorities, the VFF and other sponsors, especially Saigon Tel for doing their best to make the tournament a success.
After the ceremony, the home team started strongly and took control of the match although Khanh Hoa had several favorites playing in the V-League last season.
Midfielders Cong Huy and Ngoc Hung played confidently and helped Binh Duong dominate the field.
Their dominance resulted in a goal by Hai Dang who gathered a Van San pass after 17 minutes to open the account.
Khanh Hoa improved its defense and fought back strongly in the final minutes of the first half. Dinh Hiep, the best player of the U21 tournament in 2007, had two scoring chances but his shots went wide.
Khanh Hoa kept launching attacks during the entire second half but Binh Duong defenders stood firm.
In their second half counterattacks, Binh Duong created some clear chances and found success once during injury time when Cong Huy turned in a Duc Tai cross to end all hopes for Khanh Hoa.
Reported by Trung Duong