Vietnam suffered an 8-1 hammering at the hands of English outfit Manchester City last week but the sponsor of the glamour fixture suffered far bigger losses.
Do Quang Hien, chairman of SHB Bank, said he spent “about 40 billion Vietnam dong” ($1.83 million) bringing the four-times English champions to Southeast Asia with much more going on security, medical and organisation of the game in Hanoi.
“Man City mentioned strict conditions in the contract, especially ‘force majeure’, which said that the match would be cancelled if any of their footballers were injured or sick,” Hien was quoted as saying by Vietnamnet.vn.
“They proposed that we should buy insurance for the match and my assistant was struggling to find an insurance partner in Asia, but failed.”
Despite the losses, Hien declared himself happy with the near sell-out fixture and believed it would help Vietnam in their World Cup qualifying bid.
Big-spending Manchester City put on a show with new 49 million pounds ($76.35 million) signing Raheem Sterling scoring twice and first teamers Aleksandar Kolarov and David Silva also getting on the scoresheet.
“I was aware of a loss but this was a good chance to train our footballers to build up a professional football club that can earn revenue and support themselves,” Hien said.
“The match met fans’ expectations as they filled the stadium on the final match. Many Vietnamese footballers realised their dream to play with their favourite players from Man City.”