Thursday, April 26, 2012
Terengganu 6-2 Song Lam Nghe An
Kuala Terengganu: Malaysian side Terengganu put their recent poor form behind them as they thrashed Vietnam's Song Lam Nghe An 6-2 on Wednesday to seal their passage into the round of 16 in the AFC Cup.
Terengganu had netted only two goals in their previous four matches in Group F but a hat-trick by Liberian striker Francis Doe and a goal each by Ashari Samsuddin, Abdul Hadi Yahaya and Joseph Kalang Tie eased the Malaysian FA Cup holders to their third win in the group and their first at the Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium.
Pham Van Quyen and Hoang Van Binh responded for the Vietnamese Super League champions, who remained bottom of the group and were eliminated from contention for the knockout stage after the heavy defeat.
With only one round of games remaining in Group F, Terengganu are in second place with nine points, one behind leaders Kitchee of Hong Kong and four in front of third-placed Tampines Rovers of Singapore.
Having seen his side manage only one win in their last five games, Terengganu coach Mat Zan Mat Aris was delighted by their turnaround against the Vietnamese side.
"It was a good result for us tonight," said Mat Zan. "We played a new strategy and a new formation and while we did not have all of our first-team players, our reserves came in and did a good job.
"Now that we have qualified for the second round, I cans say that I'm very pleased with our performances so far. I'm not sure who we will be facing in the last 16 but I am looking forward to it."
Terengganu had failed to score in their previous two home games in the AFC Cup but they quickly made up for lost time as Hadi capitalised on a defensive mistake to send Ashari clear after only five minutes. His initial shot was stopped by goalkeeper Pham Duc Anh but he got the rebound and fired home at the second attempt.
Doe got on the scoresheet in the 12th minute when he turned home a pass by Kalang Tie. Pham Van Quyen narrowed the deficit in the 29th minute but Doe restored the two-goal cushion in the 34th minute before playing a through ball for Hadi to make it 4-1 seven minutes before half-time.
Doe completed his hat-trick in the 73rd minute when he shot home after getting on the end of an Ismail Faruqi corner.
Van Binh netted a second for Song Lam with six minutes left but Kalang Tie had the last word as he played a one-two with Doe on the edge of the box in the 87th minute before he fired home his side's sixth goal of the night.
Song Lam were missing the suspended duo of defender Tran Son Ha and midfielder Phan Doan Thai but coach Nguyen Huu Thang felt that Terengganu's win was fully deserved.
"Terengganu played well and took their chances and they deserved to win," said Huu Thang. "I did not have my full team because of injuries and suspensions but I still feel that Terengganu deserved to win tonight."