Nguyen Van Quyet scored the only goal to help Ha Noi FC beat Becamex Binh Duong 1-0 in the first leg of the AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal final on Wednesday.
|SOLE STRIKE: Ha Noi's Nguyen Van Quyet (left) vies for a ball against Ali Rabo of Becamex Binh Duong during the match. Ha Noi won 1-0. — Photo the-afc.com|
The captain’s penalty in the 33rd minute was denied by goalkeeper Tran Duc Cuong but the midfielder followed up to slot the only goal at the Binh Duong Stadium.
The match was marred by heavy rain proving it difficult to create more chances for either side in the first ever all-Vietnamese zonal final.
It was the hosts who made a good start with striker Wander Luiz testing Ha Noi goalie Nguyen Van Cong just 10 minutes into the match.
But the Brazilian’s effort was wide of the mark.
Ha Noi came into life midway through the first half.
Papa Omar Faye, Nguyen Quang Hai and Nguyen Thanh Chung rotated well in attack to threaten the home goal.
Senegalese Faye’s effort on 24 minutes was saved by Cuong who then reacted well to clear the follow up attempt by Hai.
A moment later Cuong showed off his talent as he blocked Hai’s finish then stood strong to deny Chung’s glaring chance.
Ha Noi continued attacking and they got the goal at the 33rd mark.
Binh Duong defender Nguyen Hung Thien Duc fouled Ha Noi’s Ngan Van Dai and the visitors were awarded a spot kick.
Keeper Cuong initially saved Quyet’s strike but could do nothing to prevent the former national team midfielder from opening the scoring.
The break did not help Binh Duong much. After the interval they did little to create any meaningful chances despite the introduction of Nguyen Anh Duc from the bench.
His best chance came with nine minutes remaining but his effort was tame.
The first leg win gave Ha Noi the advantage ahead of their return match at the Hang Dau Stadium next Wednesday.
The winner of the tie will receive a huge bonus of US$100,000 from the AFC. They will play Turkmenistan’s Altyn Asyr FC in the Inter-Zone Semi-finals.