Defender suspended after foul costs Vietnam key striker in Indonesia clashes

By Hieu Luong   March 12, 2024 | 04:05 am PT
A defender was suspended and fined after injuring a national team striker during a league match, which will make the latter miss two upcoming World Cup qualifiers against Indonesia.
The referee gives Nguyen Tang Tien (number 4) a direct red card during the V. League game between Hanoi FC and Quang Nam FC on March 8, 2024. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

Feferee Nguyen Dinh Thai gives Nguyen Tang Tien (L) a red card during a V. League game between Hanoi FC and Quang Nam FC on March 8, 2024. Photo by VnExpress/Hieu Luong

Besides a four-game ban, Nguyen Tang Tien was fined VND20 million (US$811).

The Vietnam Football Federation decided that Tien of Quang Nam FC had committed a serious foul in a V. League match last Friday against Hanoi FC which injured Pham Tuan Hai.

In the fourth minute of added time in the second half, Tien stepped on Hai's shin. He received a direct red card after the main referee Nguyen Dinh Thai consulted VAR, while the Hanoi FC striker had to leave the field on a stretcher and was taken to a hospital. Hai was diagnosed with problems in his right ankle joint, damage to his heel ligament and both anterior and posterior talofibular ligaments.

He will need at least a month before he can resume training. The 25-year-old striker will miss at least four matches with Hanoi and two matches against Indonesia with Vietnam in the second round of the 2026 World Cup qualifiers at the end of March.

This is the second time Tien has committed a dangerous foul on a Hanoi FC player. In the 2018 season, while playing for HAGL, he stepped on Do Duy Manh's knee and received a direct red card. He was banned for five matches.

Tien, 29, joined Hoang Anh Gia Lai in 2016. After the 2019 season, he moved to HCMC FC and then joined Quang Nam FC at the start of this season.

Vietnam will play Indonesia away on March 21 before returning home for the second leg on the 26th.

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