On Saturday, April 1st, we got to see some dramatic head-to-head football matches at the 2023 Niteco Cup.
This year’s Niteco Cup took place in Bach Khoa Football field at A1 Le Thanh Nghi. This is one of the ‘hottest’ events among Nitecans as after years of working here, I’ve barely seen members of the Football Club cancel their practice, no matter what reason.
And so Niteco Football Tournament was born based on their love for this sport and also plays an important role as it is a place to showcase their talents and to prove that hours of practicing on the field are all worth it.
This year's lineup with 4 teams
The excitement grew bigger when we were getting closer to D-Day. This year we got to see fire matches between 4 teams: Marketing, 21F FC, Odin, and Frey.
The first round started at 9:00 AM and witnessed 2 matches, 1 between Marketing and 21F. On the other side of the field, there were Odin and Frey. After 30 minutes, Odin earned their very first point, winning over Frey. Meanwhile, both Marketing and 21FC were able to keep the net clean, so both got 0 points in the first round.
No one wanna lose the ball to the other team
We spotted Neymar at our game ^^
The second round started after a 10-minute break. This time, the audience got to see heated battles between Odin and Marketing on the left field, and Frey and 21FC on the right field. Both Frey and 21FC scored 1 point into the opponents' net. But on the other side, things got quite hard for Odin. Being the first team to score in the latest round might have distracted them a bit, which leaves one score for the Marketing team.
"Don't you dare got the ball"
Things got heated up on the football field
It was at this moment that he knew...he screwed up
The heat kept rising up as the final round started. Fans started to move from the seating area into the outland of the field for closer observation. They were all screaming for the grand finale matches, between Odin - 21 FC and Marketing - Frey. Odin really had their game strong when in only 30 minutes, the team continually shot into 21FC's goal 5 times. Needless to say, how frustrated the 21FC team felt at that moment. The other 2 teams still chose to play it safe when no team scored any points.
Discuss tactics any time they could...
...and gave each other courage, too!
Fierce ball game
He played like there is no tomorrow
Amazing moves from our "part-time" football players
But when it came down to the final result, we were all shocked when the referee announced that the winner of the Niteco 2023 Football Tournament was team Marketing!! They scored 1 point and were able to keep their net clean throughout all 3 matches. (Fun fact: the Marketing Team was the champion of the 2022 Tournament!) And the title "The Golden Gloves" - honoring the best goalkeeper was awarded to Tan Vu – AMS Dept. Well done, Marketing team!
Winner of Niteco Cup 2023 - Marketing team with their trophy! 🏆
“It was truly a wild and crazy experience to work as both an organizer and a player. I have tried my best and the result I guess came out really well. But I think next time I'm gonna focus on being a football player only so I can showcase my skill to the fullest! But it was still a blast this time! Thank you to everyone who has helped with organizing the tournament and thank you all for cheering and supporting us!” said Khanh Dinh - the marketing team’s defender.
And the runner-up is our one and only Odin! Absolutely crazy when they managed to score 6 points in total, the highest among all teams! Quan Pham, who is considered to be the hero of the Odin team, earned the title "The Golden Shoes" for successfully scoring 4 points. The football field was truly his second home, and we can’t think of anyone who deserves this prize more!
Congratulations runner-up Odin!
Frey and 21 FC ranked 3 and 4 respectively. In only 90 minutes, they managed to deliver outstanding moves. Their performances really put the game to the next level.
Team Frey and their supporters
21FC has been amazing, too!
The Tournament was also held in Ho Chi Minh City where our representative office was split into 2 teams: Fallen Angels (FA) and Demon Slayers (DS). Catching names brought out catching games. In the first round, DS won over FA with a score of 4 - 1. However, it wouldn't take long for FA to pay back. In round two, FA scored 4 points in front of an enthusiastic and exciting audience. DS kept their heads in the game and also earned 4 points. The second round ended in a draw and the tension was higher than ever.
Fallen Angels and Demon Slayers before the big game
The referee decided to conduct a penalty shootout to finalize the winner. And after a dramatic match, the shiny trophy went to Fallen Angels, with an overall score of 8 points, only 1 point difference compared to Demon Slayers. Both had played in a spectacular way, making that Saturday morning worth every minute!
Fallen Angels with their trophy! Congrats team!
Demon Slayers deserved the spotlight, too!
Niteco Football Tournament 2023 has ended with sweat, tears, laughter, and pain but it has also left a lot of fun and memorable moment for everyone who attended that day (and also injury but fingers crossed 🤞🤞🤞 for all of it to be gone soon…).
Reaaaaally look forward to the next football tournament with new experiences, new memories, and (maybe?) a new champion 😉
Until next time!