CERES-Negros FC failed to take advantage of its home court as it settled to 1-1 draw with Vietnam’s Hanoi FC in the first leg of the 2019 AFC Cup ASEAN Zonal semifinals on Tuesday night at the Panaad Park and Stadium in Bacolod City.
The Negros Occidental-based football club is in a must-score situation heading into the second leg of the zonal semifinals next week after conceding a precious away goal to the Vietnamese.
After a goal-less opening half, Ceres-Negros gained the advantage at the 57th minute with midfielder Stephan Schrock setting up striker Bienvenido Marañon for a well-placed header.
Ceres-Negros’ upperhand, however, did not last long as the visiting squad was able to respond with an equalizer with Omar Faye finding cracks on the defense for a close-range shot.
Both squads went for the go-ahead conversion after that but tight defense emanated with the Hanoi had its last chance courtesy of forward Hoang Vu Samson but his try was foiled by Ceres-Negros keeper Roland Muller.
On the part of the Busmen, Mike Ott should have won the game for the home team in the final minutes but he failed to hit the target.
Ceres-Negros hopes to pull off a win and advance to the next round when it faces Ha Noi away at the Hang Day Stadium in Hanoi, Vietnam on June 25./PN