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V-League scheduled to return on March



After the second qualifying round of the 2022 World Cup in Asia was postponed to June, the Vietnamese football team will not play against Malaysia in late March as the previous plan. 

V-League dự kiến trở lại vào tháng 3

The Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) and the Vietnam Professional Football (VPF) have adjusted the V-League 2021 schedule.

As the Covid-19 pandemic has been basically controlled in many provinces and cities, to fit the schedules of Viettel, Hanoi and Saigon FCs at the regional football tournament, VFF and VPF agreed to resume V-League 2021 in mid-March.

Specifically, the V-League third round matches will take place on March 13-14. Round 4 will be held on March 19-20. The next rounds will be organized later, when teams will have only 3-4 days off between matches instead of one week as before.

Under this schedule, the first phase of the V-League will finish as planned, in order to enable the Vietnamese national team to group up in May to prepare for the remaining three matches of Group G, in the second qualifying round of the World Cup 2022 Asia region.

The Vietnam team will face Indonesia on June 7, Malaysia on June 11 and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on June 15.

In addition to the V-League, the First Division is scheduled to open on March 21, and the National Cup will take place with an alternate schedule. It is expected that professional soccer tournaments in Vietnam will end in late September 2021.

Depending on the epidemic situation, the organizing board and local authorities will decide whether to open stadiums for the audience.

Huy Phong



French films will be broadly screened in Vietnam



Vietnamese audiences will have chance to watch seven bespoke classic and modern French films that will be screened in 11 cities and provinces nationwide in 2021.

French films will be broadly screened in Vietnam

“A Man and a Woman” (French: Un homme et une femme) is a 1966 French film written and directed by Claude Lelouch and starring Anouk Aimée and Jean-Louis Trintignant.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism has granted permission to screen French films in Vietnam for the year of 2021.

The seven films are “I’m Looking for Myself”, “A Man and a Woman”, “The Princess with Donkey’s Skin”, “Girls in Rochefort City”, “Can Artificial Intelligence Outperform Humans?” “Living with Robots” and “The Journey of Brain Creating”.

The films will be screened in 11 cities and provinces nationwide, including Hanoi, Hai Phong, Thai Nguyen, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Lao Cai, Thua Thien-Hue, Da Nang, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Lat, and Can Tho.

The ministry also noted that screenings will only take place once the Covid-19 pandemic is fully brought under control in localities. In addition, relevant preventive measures must also be strictly observed.

Visit for detail information about the films and accurate screening time.



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Struggling giants Hà Nội FC hope COVID-19 break gives them a lift



Hà Nội FC midfielder Nguyễn Quang Hải (centre) and teammates are working hard for the return of the V.League 1 tournament after a three-week rest due to COVID-19. Photo

HÀ NỘI — The enforced rest due to the COVID-19 pandemic may have been a boon for the country’s two best-supported teams Hà Nội FC and Hoàng Anh Gia Lai ahead of the mid-March restart.

Hà Nội are rooted to the bottom of the table with two losses in two matches, a shock for the five-time champions.

“We did not have a good start with two defeats. We will have to prepare carefully for every coming match and play well because of the tough format of the tournament,” said coach Chu Đình Nghiêm.

“Our target is the top six first, then we could vie for the title in the second period,” he said.

After the Tết (Lunar New Year) holiday, Nghiêm and his players all tested negative for the coronavirus and returned to training.

They have also welcomed the return of key defenders Trần Đình Trọng and Đỗ Duy Mạnh after recovery from injuries.

“They both can follow the teams’ training plan. It is a good sign for all of us,” Nghiêm told reporters.

He also said that midfielder Moses Oloya who could not play in the previous matches due to a leg injury will be back in action.

Speaking with media, star midfielder Nguyễn Quang Hải is excited to play again soon.

“I really hope the pandemic is controlled well for the return of competitions. My club is struggling and under heavy pressure (after losses). We will have to overcome challenges to find ourselves,” he said.

“No one is happy with a loss of course, but we can learn about ourselves from it. We will stand up from where we collapsed and fight back strongly. Nothing could force us to give up our initial target of winning the V.League 1 title and it would be more wonderful if we could conquer the AFC Cup too,” he added.

Hà Nội, which recently extended defender Trần Văn Kiên’s contract to 2023, are now seeking opponents for friendly matches in the coming days.

They will visit Hải Phòng FC at Lạch Tray Stadium on March 13 when the league restarts.

Time for deep understanding

Thai coach Kiatisuk Senamuang of Hoàng Anh Gia Lai believes he understands his players better thanks to the extra preparation time the COVID-19 pause gave them.

“The postponement came reluctantly but personally I think it is good for teams with more time for preparing. I am closer with the players when spending more time with them in both training and daily activities,” he said.

He said the first two rounds of fixtures were like a pre-V.League 1 tournament for teams to test their line-ups, personnel and tactics.

“My players are happy to play again in the next few weeks and grab the best results. We want to take the championship trophy,” said the Thai football legend.

After two matches, Senamuang experienced one win and one loss which put his team in ninth position.

Hoàng Anh Gia Lai will host Topenland Bình Định on home turf on March 14 and Senamuang hopes to have the stands packed with fans.

In that match, the hosts will face their former striker Rimario Gordonwho failed to score a single goal in 10 matches for HAGL in the 2018 season but netted a solid goal return for Thanh Hóa and Hà Nội before signing a contract with Bình Định this year.

Gordon has scored one goal in two matches this season and is keen to punish his former team.

Speaking about his team’s preparation, Bình Định coach Nguyễn Đức Thắng said: “Following the new schedule, teams must play in tougher time table (three matches in 10 days). It requires strong physique from players, then teams in general and Bình Định, in particular, must have their own plan to make sure players’ best conditions and avoid injuries.”

Hoàng Anh Gia Lai will play a friendly match with V.League 2 side People’s Police while Bình Định will play V.League 2 Khánh Hòa in Nha Trang before their match in the Central Highlands’ Pleiku City.

Other matches will be between SHB Đà Nẵng and Hồng Lĩnh Hà Tĩnh on March 13, Quảng Ninh and HCM City and Viettel and Becamex Bình Dương on March 14.

The league organisers, the Việt Nam Professional Football Joint Stock Company (VPF), has only rescheduled 10 rounds of fixtures for the first half of the league season.

The league will pause again in mid-April when players are summoned for the national teams and some clubs take part in continental competitions.

The season will resume in July and is expected to end in September.

The V.League 2 matches will begin on March 19 while the National Cup will start in April with the exact date being confirmed later.

Local authorities will decide if supporters are allowed to attend matches. —


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Football coach Park Hang Seo: “I’m not interested in fame”



In addition to professional goals, Korean head coach Park Hang Seo of the Vietnamese national football squad wants to improve the mission of connecting Vietnam and Korea.

HLV Park Hang Seo: 'Tôi không mặn mà với hào quang'

Korean head coach Park Hang Seo of the Vietnamese national football squad

“Within the three years I have worked in Vietnam, we can see the harmony between the two countries through football. Many people see me as an icon, or a bridge between Vietnam and Korea,” said coach Park Hang Seo.

He said that success in football will be forgotten very quickly if he fails, so he always thinks about the present as well as the future, instead of the past halo.

“I always think that fame is the same as acting. I am always grateful for the support and love of the Vietnamese people. That sentiment has definitely affected my performance and achievement because I am the head coach of the national football team,” he said.

“I try not to be dependent on fame as it may disappear very quickly. I had a similar experience at the 2002 World Cup when I used to be famous, so I try not to be too interested in this aura,” he said.

He affirmed that Vietnamese fans’ feelings for him are very sincere, so to thank fans, he tries to take pictures or give his autograph because he is not fluent in Vietnamese.

“We do our best to show our sincere gratitude to our fans as much as we can,” Mr. Park said.

The coach said the image of Korea in Vietnam is much better thanks to football. “I have heard many stories about Korean people and tourists served and treated very well by Vietnamese or at local restaurants or tourist spots every time the Vietnamese national team wins or plays well.

And I’m glad that the harmony in football helps the development of many other relationships in society,” he said.

“However, I always feel that I am receiving too much attention from fans. So I feel sorry for the coaching staff and the whole team who have always worked hard together. If I play a role in the development of diplomacy between the two countries, I will always be willing to take a part.”

Huy Phong-LH


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