Reigning champions Thái Sơn Nam will face archrival Sahako in the opening match of the National Futsal Championship on February 22.
|Thái Sơn Nam players in a match during the 2023 season. The national champions will begin their title defending campaign on February 22. — Photo courtesy of Thái Sơn Nam FC
HÀ NỘI — Two strongest teams Thái Sơn Nam and Sahako will face each other in the opening match of the National Futsal Championship on February 22.
Thái Sơn Nam are the reigning champions of the tournament and the National Cup. Sahako were first runners-up of the national championship and National Cup 2022 winners. The two teams have been neck-and-neck for all domestic titles since 2017. They are also home to most of national team players.
The competition features eight teams which will compete in the first-round matches on February 22-23 after a draw conducted on January 24 in Hà Nội.
Three other games will see Khánh Hòa vs Thái Sơn Bắc, Tân Hiệp Hưng vs Hà Nội FC, and Luxury Hạ Long vs Sài Gòn Titans.
Among them, Luxury Hạ Long are the new face at the highest level national event. Previously, they took part in the National Cup in 2023 and finished in the bottom position.
Teams will compete in the two-leg round robin format. The first leg will be from February 22 to March 7 and after a short break for the national team, it will continue from June 1-18. The second one is from June 25 to July 31.
All participants can sign one foreign and one overseas Vietnamese player.
|The Việt Nam Football Federation conducts a draw for the National Futsal Championship on January 24 in Hà Nội. — Photo courtesy of VFF
“This is the second season that the home-and-away format is applied at the National Futsal Championship. The Việt Nam Football Federation (VFF) believes that the change in the organising activities and teams’ good preparation will make a successful tournament,” Nguyễn Minh Châu, VFF deputy general secretary, said.
“We also hope to witness competitive matches with outstanding performance of players as well as strong support from fans. It will help us to find talented players for the national team for the important targets in 2024,” he said.
The winners will walk away with the golden trophy and VNĐ500 million (US$20,300). The second and third finishers will pocket VNĐ200 million and VNĐ100 million, respectively.
The organisers will present VNĐ40 million to the best fair-play team, along with VNĐ10 million awards for outstanding individuals such as MVP, best goalkeeper and top scorer.