Song Lam Nghe An (SLNA) remained firmly on top of the V-League championship with a 6-2 home win over Dong Thap at Vinh Stadium in a 19th round match on Sunday.
SLNA got only one point from three previous matches but they remained on top because second- and third-placed Da Nang and Thanh Hoa didn't fare any better.
The three previous failures seemed to make SLNA more determined, and although the visitors Dong Thap were not easy rivals, the hosts scored six goals in a row before conceding two consolation goals near the end of the match to their opponents.
Their Sunday victory to SLNA, with 39 points, further ahead of second-placed Da Nang, who suffered a 1-2 away defeat to Hanoi ACB at Hanoi's Hang Day Stadium.
The loss didn't cost the V-League 2009 champions Da Nang their second place because third-placed Thanh Hoa also lost 1-2 to hosts Hai Phong at Lach Tray Stadium.
At the Go Dau Stadium, hosts Binh Duong, the V-League 2007-08 champs, beat 2005-06 champs Dong Tam Long An 2-1, leaving the visitors stuck to the bottom. The teams right above them, Khanh Hoa and Hoa Phat Hanoi, both suffered away losses, to Ninh Binh and Navibank Saigon respectively.
In an early 19th round match, reigning champs Hanoi T&T thrashed 2003-04 champs Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL) 6-2 at Hanoi's Hang Day Stadiu. Hanoi T&T are now in third place, eight points adrift of the league leaders while HAGL slid one position to eight.