The Friday night match between Hong Linh Ha Tinh and Hanoi FC took place in front of the Ha Tinh Stadium bursting at the seams despite organizers confirming that only 10,000 tickets, half the stadium's capacity, will be sold.
Thousands climbed up the fences and restrooms to see their club Ha Tinh playing against national team star players like Nguyen Quang Hai and Do Hung Dung of Hanoi FC. One fan passed out because of asphyxiation and is pictured being helped to leave the stadium.
In the 20th minute, the game had to be stopped temporarily as thousands of fans spilled over from an overfull Stand B to the sidelines of the ground.
A stadium representative used a loudspeaker to address fans, asking them to return to their seats, but his words fell on deaf ears.
Ha Tinh is a rookie team in the V. League 2020 season. They started off their season with two losses against Viettel and Nam Dinh. However, a surprising 2-0 win over Than Quang Ninh in the third match caught the attention of the fans and they turned up in force for the fourth match against Hanoi FC, the V. League 1 defending champion.
The hot weather (38°C) made the atmosphere on the field even more stuffy.
The Ha Tinh Stadium, home ground of the Hong Linh Ha Tinh club, cost VND51 billion ($2,190) to build.
After 20 minutes of disruption, the game continued with fans still standing on the sidelines facing police officers deployed to maintain security.
To prevent more people getting off the stands to the edge of the ground, the policemen closed gates and blocked the crowd.
In the 67th minute, the stadium went silent as Dung opened the score for Hanoi FC. As the game headed to its close, tense Ha Tinh fans stood up, hoping their team will equalize.
The fans finally got what they wanted in the 87th minute when Ha Tinh scored from a corner. The whole stadium exploded with celebrations. The draw helped the team reach the ninth position on the table with four points after four games.
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