Vu Nguyen Vu, main referee of the V. League 1 match between HCMC FC and Viettel FC, sent off the wrong player on Wednesday.
Referee Vu Nguyen Vu gives Viettel FC’s Ho Khac Ngoc (L) a wrong red card in the V. League 1 game on October 14, 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.
In the 87th minute of the game, Viettel defender Bui Tien Dung pushed HCMC’s Quang Nam inside the box. Referee Vu did not hesitate to award HCMC a penalty. At the time, Viettel had lead 1-0. Despite the clear foul, players tried intimidating ref Vu, and midfielder Ho Khac Ngoc received a warning.
To everyone’s surprise, Vu followed Ngoc’s yellow card up with a red. Viettel captain Dung, who had committed the foul, queried the mistake. As a result, Vu realized he had confused Ngoc with Nguyen Trong Hoang, who had previously received a yellow and got subbed.
Vu subsequently canceled Ngoc’s red card, to general confusion, and allowed Ngoc to finish the game.
Viettel FC captain Bui Tien Dung confronts referee Vu for his mistake. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.
Though the penalty was still awarded to HCMC, Viettel keeper Tran Nguyen Manh managed to protect the net. Having missed the chance to equalize, HCMC players and coaching staff confronted the referee about the red card, only returning to the bench once a sidelined player got his own yellow.
The game ended with a 1-0 victory to Viettel, putting them on top of the table. This was already HCMC’s third consecutive loss, with their chance of winning the title now next to zero.