tạm biệt Xuan Thanh Sai Gon; The Vleague is reduced to 11 teams, as XTSG say goodbye

Xuan Thanh Sai Gon FC (XTSG) will not be completing the 2013 VLeague season. The Ho Chi Minh City based club are refusing to fulfill their remaining two fixtures after the VFF accused the club of ‘a lack of effort’ in a recent match and docked them 4 points. The match in question was a home defeat to relegation threatened Kien Giang, where Sai Gon fielded a number of young players and showed ‘a lack of effort’, according to the VFF, however no individual players were named.

All fixtures, points and goals accrued/conceded in matches involving XTSG are now deemed void. Obviously this has effected a number of teams, some more than others. T&T for example took 4 points from matches with XTSG, while Song Lam Nghe An took 6 points, resulting in the gap between the two sides at the top of the league increasing to 4 points. Meaning Ha Noi T&T’s erratic performance in the 3-3 draw last month in Sai Gon has turned out to be beneficial.

Song Lam Nghe An have dropped to fourth place in the league, with Da Nang also benefiting, rising to second ,and HAGL up to third.

At the other end of the table Kien Giang have been spared relegation, with XTSG being this season relegated team, but they will in fact suffer further punishment and be forced to start the 2014 season in division 3. I wonder if the team will just fold and another team will be created in Ho Chi Minh City. Conspiracy theorist will also have their views, especially with the history of corruption in the Vietnamese game. I though will hold on to some naivety, as in terms of the title, no one’s gained extra distance and the biggest losers seem to be SLNA, who seem to be the nation’s favourite team.

Interestingly, Le Cong Vinh, the nation’s leading player in recent history has returned to the top of the goal scoring chart, with Ha Noi T&T’s Samson losing the 3 goals he’d scored against XTSG. Le Cong Vinh completed a loan move to Japanese side Consadole Sapporo a month ago.

League table before Xuan Thanh Sai Gon expulsion:

Team

P

W

D

L

F

A

GD

P

1

Hà Nội T&T

20

11

5

4

46

23

23

38

2

Sông Lam Nghệ An

20

10

6

4

41

22

19

36

3

SHB Đà Nẵng

20

9

7

4

29

24

5

34

4

Hoàng Anh Gia Lai

20

9

5

6

23

17

6

32

5

Thanh Hóa

20

8

6

6

39

34

5

30

 

New league table, top 5, after the expulsion of XTSG. 23/08/2013

Team

P

W

D

L

F

A

GD

P

1

Hà Nội T&T

18

10

4

4

46

20

21

34

2

SHB Đà Nẵng

18

9

5

4

26

21

5

32

3

Hoàng Anh Gia Lai

19

9

5

5

23

16

7

32

4

Sông Lam Nghệ An

18

8

6

4

37

21

16

30

5

Thanh Hóa

18

8

6

4

37

30

7

30

 

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