The Thien Truong Stadium management did not report the truth relating to a reporter's allegation that he was attacked by the management staff in a recent football match, the Vietnam Football Federation (VFF) has conceded.
VFF vice chairman Nguyen Lan Trung made the statement on Friday during a meeting at VFF headquarters in Hanoi with representatives from The Thao 24 gio (Sports 24 hours) newspaper, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Information and Communication.
The meeting was held following the newspaper's objection to VFF's Wednesday decision to give the stadium management only a warning.
The newspaper's reporter Duy Bui had accused stadium management staff of attacking him during a V-League eighth round match between hosts Nam Dinh and Dong Tam Long An (DTLA) April 11.
However, VFF's penalty department said a report by the stadium management did not mention any attack on the journalist, nor did a report by match supervisor Nguyen Van Nhat.
The stadium management's report said: "When a fight took place between players of the two teams in the 34th minute of the match, a person ran down to the field from Stand A's VIP area, with a camera raised high in his hand."
The report said this person was neither wearing a card nor a special shirt for use by reporters. The security guards asked him to leave but he refused, so there were violent pulls and pushes between the two sides.
The penalty department manager Nguyen Hai Huong said on Wednesday that he and the other members of the department had also seen a video recording about the match but hadn't seen anything like the reporter's allegations, so they decided to let the stadium management off with a warning.
After VFF vice chairman Trung had seen the information and evidence provided by the newspaper, however, he admitted the stadium management had lied about the incident.
Trung said VFF would collect more information and evidence about the incident before making a final decision. This meant the penalty department's Wednesday decision is no longer valid.
Also at the meeting on Friday, inspectors from the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism and the Ministry of Information and Communication said that it wouldn't be necessary to bring the case to court if reporter Duy Bui and the stadium management can settle the problem between themselves.
Vu Xuan Thanh, chief inspector of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, said the ministry would also ask Nam Dinh Province's Department of Culture, Sports and Tourism to further investigate the case.
VFF chairman Nguyen Trong Hy said he would ask the stadium management to make an accurate report on the incident.
Meanwhile, the newspaper's editor-in-chief Vu Quang Huy said the paper demands that VFF make everything clear, the stadium management admit their fault and publicly apologize to reporter Duy Bui, and the VFF imposes severe penalties those who attacked and abused the reporter.