Stadium flare-up triggers penalty in Hanoi

By Hoang Nguyen   July 21, 2020 | 05:31 am PT
Stadium flare-up triggers penalty in Hanoi
Flares are lightened up in Hang Day Stadium during a V. League 1 match between Hanoi FC and Hai Phong FC on July 17, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy.
Hang Day Stadium operators will be fined for not guaranteeing security at a V. League 1 match on July 17.

Seven flares were lit in the stands of Hang Day Stadium as Hanoi FC clashed with Hai Phong FC in the 10th fixture of 2020 V. League 1, one making it onto the field.

Although security had been tightened before the match, a group of fans still managed to sneak flares into the stadium.

On Monday, V. League 1 organizers, Vietnam Football Joint Stock Company (VPF) requested the Vietnam Foorball Federation's (VFF) disciplinary department take action against the flare-carrying Hai Phong FC fans and penalize the stadium operator, though under extenuating circumstances.

According to Nguyen Trong Hoai, organizing head of V. League 1, Hang Day Stadium did its best to avoid such an incident. However, having failed, it needs to face punishment along with Hanoi FC and Hai Phong FC.

"We will consider the report and decide on a penalty for Hai Phong FC and the stadium operators. Hai Phong will be fined for allowing its fans to light flares inside the stadium, while match organizers will be penalized for letting it happen, despite improving on security," Vu Xuan Thanh, head of VFF’s Disciplinary Department told Thanh Nien.

"However, in my point of view, this cannot carry on. We will report to the federation to discuss a solution. Hanoi and Hai Phong might have to play behind closed doors the next time they meet at Hang Day Stadium," Thanh added.

Hang Day has been fined many times over the lighting of flares. From 2015 to 2019, it paid a total VND645 million ($27,744) in penalties, more than any other stadium in the country. Trailing Hang Day is Hai Phong Stadium with VND380 million ($16,345) and Duoc Nam Ha Nam Dinh’s Thien Truong Stadium with VND235 million ($10,120).

Flare-related incidents have also marred international games. In the last five years, VFF has been fined nearly VND1 billion ($43,060) because of Vietnamese fans using flares during matches hosted by the national team.

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