The AFC Cup 2019 group stage came to an end for some teams. In the ASEAN zone, four teams progressed to the knockout stages and will now contest in a Zonal semifinal, with the winner going on to play in the Inter-zonal semifinal.
Vietnam sides Becamex Binh Duong and Hanoi FC joined PSM Makassar and Ceres Negros in the AFC Cup 2019 ASEAN Zonal semifinals. Both teams went through on the expense of Singapore’s Tampines Rovers, who were eliminated despite leading Group G ahead of matchday six.
Hanoi FC overcame Tampines first in a straightforward two-nil win, with Ganiyu Oseni and Nguyen Thanh Chung scoring the goals. As a result, the V League side leapfrogged their rivals into the top spot in their group, thereby securing straight qualification.
Despite the loss, Tampines’ hopes to make it through to the knockout stages remained alive. All the Stags had to do was wait and trust Ceres Negros to beat Becamex Binh Duong at home. However, the Philippines club were handed a shock defeat in their final group game, with Wander Luiz scoring the winner in the dying minutes. While the loss didn’t affect Ceres’s fate, who had already qualified for the knockout stages, it did eliminate Tampines Rovers from the running, with Becamex qualifying as the best runners up.
The four sides will now play in a two-legged semifinal. The winners of the two ties will then battle one-another for the right to compete in the Inter-zonal semifinal.
(Image Credits: AFC)