Owing to the difficulty in finding sponsors or having limited funding, many clubs have begun recruiting younger players to play in the Toyota V.League 1 to reduce expenses.

Among the 26 domestic players, who will play in the league, SHB Da Nang's coach Le Huynh Duc has inducted 13 fresh faces for the U19 and U21 teams into his list.

"Using young players trained by our club will help the team have greater moral strength, but at the same time, it will also help the club cut down on transfer fees in case the club has to hire veterans from other clubs. Da Nang has saved at least 7 billion VND (333,000 USD) by recruiting these youngsters," said the club's Chairman Bui Xuan Hoa.

Duc uses young talents, such as Phan Van Long, 19, and Ho Ngoc Thang, 21, in co-ordination with experienced players in his line-up to take part in all tournaments.

He said this would give younger players a chance to prove themselves and hone their skills and gradually replace veterans.

Song Lam Nghe An (SLNA) have also signed with young players trained by the club to play in the V.League 1 this year, including Ho Tuan Tai and Hoang Van Khanh, who played well in the U21 tournament last year.

"Under the rules of the Vietnam Football Federation, players who take part in professional events will receive minimum wages of 10 million VND per month. Given the use of players trained by our club, we are more comfortable with paying them a monthly salary," the club's Chairman Nguyen Hong Thanh said.

"We hope the economy will prosper in the near future. At that time, SLNA will have many sponsors, and the club will be able to retain its best players," Thanh added.

Last season, SLNA's young talents, such as Tran Phi Son, Que Ngoc Hai, as well as Ngo Hoang Thinh, who were born in 1992 and 1993, bagged spots in the first team.

The V.League 1's Dong Tam Long An have also hired young players to reduce its financial burden.

The team have called upon 18-year-old striker Duong Anh Tu, who had a three-month training session in Japan, to play in the country's top-flight tournament.

Midfielder Pham Hoang Lam, 21, halfback Huynh Tan Tai, 20, have also been included in Long An's list.

Another club enrolling young players is Sanna Khanh Hoa. Fifteen of the 27 local footballers are aged between 18 and 23 years.

According to coach Vo Dinh Tan, these players who have played in the first and second division events with each other will have strong attachments to create a new strength in the league.

Dong Thap's Pham Cong Loc has recruited 17-year-old striker Nguyen Cong Thanh for the tournament, along with five other younger players.

Thanh is a special case because he is currently in senior high school and has to balance his studies with training and competing.

"Thanh has a good physique and is a promising player. He played very well in the U21 team. I hope he will advance greatly in the tournament," said Loc.-VNA