15 July 2010
Get to know Dong Thap
Dong Thap won the award 'Best team of month' in June and it is the second time the club has been honoured in this season.
Dong Thap is a club that earns my respect. Despite labeled as an average team and sometimes a relegation candidate, the club often upsets the odds. In 2009, they fought bravely to finish at 5th place, a surprising result to most people who always thought there was no way to succeed without money in V-league. For 2010, they have done even better so far with the second place in the table. It means the dream of championship is not far from reality. If they can make it, it will be truly a miraculous feat. So, what makes their power?
The flow of talents
Dong Thap is well-known for its youth teams system, which is considered the best in Mekong delta. Just every one or two years, the club produces some new potential youngsters that make other clubs jealous of. These young players often show their ability at the very early age. That's why Dong Thap always have adequate replacements for leaving players.
For last two seasons, some of Dong Thap's best players such as Phan Thanh Binh, Nguyen Quy Suu, Anh Tuan and Chi Hung had left Dong Thap for richer clubs like HAGL or DT Long An. But while HAGL struggled to survive, Dong Thap played quite well with new bunch of good players like of Luong Van Duoc Em, Bui Tan Truong and Nguyen Van Ngan who come from their own youth teams. That's the way Dong Thap has been doing, training not buying, and it proves quite successful.
Dong Thap is good at not only training young players but also discovering foreign talents. Unlike other clubs that often pay big bucks to sign foreign players then release them at the end of the season, Dong Thap hardly has to regret about what they paid for. One particular thing about foreigners at Dong Thap is that all of them are Nigerian. It was also true in 2009 when Timothy Anjembe, Aniekan Ekpe and Samson Kayode played extremely well to contribute to the success of the club. After Timothy and Aniekan left for other teams, Dong Thap brought in some new Nigerian faces like Sunday Ibeji, Olushola Aganun, Felix Ajala and Adesope Hammed who are accompanied by striker Samson and combination of good domestic players. It makes Dong Thap a very strong team.
Cao Lanh Stadium
If teams are afraid of playing at Lach Tray Stadium because of the heat from stands, they are afraid of playing at Cao Lanh Stadium because of the heat from the sun. Due to poor lighting system, all games played at Cao Lanh are pushed to earlier time than the rest, frequently at 15:30. Playing under extremely hot weather will quickly tire players out so other clubs often complain that they can only walk after playing for 60 mins at Cao Lanh Stadium. However, it's not a problem for the home side. They feel even stronger under the sun. That's why they have been unbeaten at home soil so far. Strong clubs like Binh Duong, Da Nang, Ha Noi T&T all left here empty-handed.