Singapore Premier League • April 13, 2014
Rams Seeking to Halt Protectors’ Ascent
Woodlands Wellington vs Home United
(April 13, Sunday, 7.30pm, Woodlands Stadium)
Written by: Khalis Rifhan
Three points separates Woodlands Wellington and Home United as they lock horns at Woodlands Stadium with the host looking to notch up their second win of the Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League campaign.
For the Rams, they are refreshed having had extra days of rest compared to their opponents who had a gruelling April and will be playing their fourth match in eleven days, with their previous match – a 2-0 win over New Radiant in the AFC Cup – played four day ago.
The Rams have carved out a name for themselves as the draw specialist this season after notching up four draws in their opening six matches. While they managed to eke out a win over Tanjong Pagar a month ago, they were unlucky to go down to Warriors by a solitary goal in their previous match.
Lee Kwan Woo will return to the squad after serving his one-match suspension.
Lee’s absence was not felt by the Protectors in their previous league match as Bruno Castanheira and Izzdin Shafiq were flawless in midfield and Precious Emuejeraye settled in his new position in the holding midfield area with ease.
Despite having a slow start to the season, coach Lee Lim Saeng’s charges are now climbing the league tables and one of the factors for their rise is the impeccable form of Fazrul Nawaz who has three goals to his name this campaign.
With former Singapore international Indra Shahdan Daud back in the fold after sitting out the first few matches due to an injury, coach Lee will be spoilt for choice in the attacking department.
Although on paper it might look like the Protectors are potential winners by looking at past results between the two clubs, Woodlands should not be dismissed as easy opponents. What is missing in Woodlands currently is their inability to consistently hit the back of the net.
2013 season top scorer Moon Soon Ho only found the net once so far this year while compatriot Chang Jo Yoon has a goal more. Against Warriors, the Rams was totally off the radar for most part of the match with their midfield looking clueless and lack of ideas moving forward.
Key Men to Watch:
Woodlands Wellington: Yazid Yasin
Although Yazid could not prevent his team from going down to Warriors in their last league match, he showed his class with countless numbers of crucial saves.
The league’s longest-serving player also displayed astute leadership from the penalty box, marshalling his defence and forming a solid chemistry with his defenders.
But Woodlands need to do more than just to rely on the former Singapore Under-23 goalkeeper to keep a clean slate at the back and hope their attackers put on their scoring boots and put a few past Protectors’ Shahril Jantan.
Home United: Fazrul Nawaz
His head injury sustained while turning out for Malaysia Super League champions LionsXII in their encounter against Malaysian Armed Forces in the FA Cup aside, Fazrul has came back strongly and bagged three goals in three matches.
Fazrul’s return to the squad has eased coach Lee goal-scoring woes and the latter will be hoping the former continues his fine form against the Rams.
The striker’s tendency to lurk in between defenders caused headache to his opponents and this was evident when he struck two goals against Harimau Muda in his season debut for Home United.
Woodlands Wellington – LDWDD
3/4/14 Warriors FC 1-0 Woodlands Wellington
26/3/14 Woodlands Wellington 1-1 Albirex Niigata (S)
21/3/14 Tanjong Pagar United 0-1 Woodlands Wellington
13/3/14 Courts Young Lions 2-2 Woodlands Wellington
28/2/14 Woodlands Wellington 1-1 Balestier Khalsa
Home United – WWWDW
9/4/14 Home United 2-0 New Radiant (AFC Cup)
5/4/14 Home United 2-1 Balestier Khalsa
2/4/14 Home United 2-1 Churchill Brothers (AFC Cup)
27/3/14 Home United 2-2 Hougang United
23/3/14 Harimau Muda 0-3 Home United
18/3/14 Churchill Brothers 3-1 Home United (AFC Cup)
Head to Head (S.League)
25/9/13 Woodlands Wellington 2-3 Home United
6/5/13 Woodlands Wellington 0-3 Home United
5/3/13 Home United 0-2 Woodlands Wellington
25/10/12 Woodlands Wellington 0-0 Home United
5/5/12 Home United 3-1 Woodlands Wellington
24/10/11 Home United 2-1 Woodlands Wellington
22/6/11 Woodlands Wellington 1-5 Home United
27/3/11 Home United 2-0 Woodlands Wellington