The Nghe An-based footballer, along with his fellows Van Truong, Hai Lam, Quoc Anh, Bat Hieu, and Phuoc Vinh, were banned from international competition from 2007 to 2011 for match fixing at the 2005 Southeast Asian Games. The football governing body later lifted the ban for Quyen a year ealier.
“I dug my own grave,” he talked of his biggest mistake in life.
Quyen was also banned from playing at the country’s top-tier V-League by the Vietnam Football Federation, which later lifted the ban in 2008 to enable him to return to the pitch during the season that year.
In his first match after the ban, the 28-year-old netted a goal to take his Song Lam Nghe An team to a victory over the home rivals Quan Khu 4.
“I burst into tears after scoring the goal,” he told Tuoi Tre.
Quyen snatched a total of 30 goals at V-League 2008, an achievement he said was not too bad given the 30 months he was banned from playing the game.
Quyen in the national football squad
A year later, a traffic accident caused him a severe injury that kept him off the field for most of the football season that year.
“Upon recovery, I had to be a substitute player most of the time due to the failure to compete with the international fellows,” he said.
“You have to be a footballer to fully understand the feeling of repeatedly sitting on the substitute bench.
“How could you play or cooperate well with your team when you could occasionally enter the pitch for only a couple of minutes?”
Talking of the Hanoi FC forward Le Cong Vinh , who was almost known to no one at Quyen’s most prime time but now the country’s most renowned player, Quyen simply said he feels happy for Vinh’s success.
“I wish he’s always happy, too,” he added.
New club, new hope
Before the 16th round of 2012 V-League, Quyen left his home club Song Lam Nghe An for HCMC-based Saigon FC, where he hoped to be playing more frequently.
“I want to experience a new environment and regain my form,” he said.
“My biggest dream now is to play more to reciprocate the love of fans and the encouragement of coaches who have helped me stand up after the fall.
“Please give me a chance to start everything afresh.
“Please help, and forgive me.”