News Singapore Premier League • November 27, 2020
Singapore Premier League Week 14: Preview
Zehrudin Mehmedovic (right) pulls all the strings for Tampines
SINGAPORE, 27 NOVEMBER 2020 – The biggest clash this weekend could very well decide the destination of the AIA Singapore Premier League (SPL) title when leaders Albirex Niigata (S) and second-placed Tampines Rovers, two points behind, face off on Sunday. Third-placed Lion City Sailors will look to keep up their faint title hopes when they visit Young Lions, while Balestier Khalsa and Geylang International jostle in a possible fourth-place decider. Elsewhere, Tanjong Pagar United are targeting a win away against out-of-sorts Hougang United. All LIVE on our Facebook page and YouTube channel!
ALSO READ: Week 13 Roundup
Chance for Geylang to consolidate fourth spot
Balestier Khalsa vs Geylang International | 28 Nov | 5.30pm | Bishan | Singtel Ch 112, StarHub Ch 202
Shuhei Hoshino will aim to continue his scoring ways for Balestier
Team news: Balestier will continue to make do without defenders Fadli Kamis and Ensar Brunčević due to suspension and injury respectively.
As for Geylang, top scorer Khairul Nizam is unlikely to be fit due to a hamstring problem but they will welcome back creative midfielder Firdaus Kasman from suspension as they look to extend the three-point gap between both sides – with the third-best local team set to qualify for continental competition next year.
- Balestier have failed to win in five games since beating Geylang 3-2 in October.
- Balestier are yet to win at home in six attempts this season.
- Balestier have failed to keep a clean sheet in their last six outings.
- Geylang have won two out of their last three away games.
- Balestier have scored three goals in each of the last two encounters at Bishan.
- There have been at least three goals or more in the last four league encounters.
- The last time both sides met at Bishan in August 2019, Geylang scored injury-time goals through substitutes Fareez Farhan and Amy Recha to win 4-3. Then-Balestier coach Khidhir Khamis is now assistant to Noor Ali at Geylang, while Jufri Taha is with the Tigers after starting that game on the opposite side.
- Balestier could go six games without a win for the first time since a seven-match losing streak in July 2019.
Buoyant Jaguars smell blood against out-of-sort Cheetahs
Hougang United vs Tanjong Pagar United | 28 Nov | 5.30pm | Hougang | Singtel Ch 113, StarHub Ch 201
Luiz Junior (right) is on fire for Tanjong Pagar
Team news: Hougang have issues galore, with foreigners Zachary Anderson and Charlie Machell now ruled out of selection after the impending expiry of their contracts while teenage winger Farhan Zulkifli will also serve a one-match suspension. Forwards Sahil Suhaimi and Naufal Azman have already been ruled out for the season.
Meanwhile Tanjong Pagar will miss Delwinder Singh after the experienced centre-back came off early in the 2-2 draw with Balestier due to a hamstring injury. Farihin Farkhan is also a possible doubt, while fellow winger Ignatius Ang is already out for the campaign as the Jaguars look to follow up on encouraging draws in their last two outings.
- Hougang have lost their last three games – in fact they have won just one out of their last seven.
- Hougang’s only clean sheet from 14 competitive games this season came against Tanjong Pagar in the 0-0 draw at Jurong East at the start of November.
- Hougang have won just one out of their last 18 matches at Hougang Stadium.
- Hougang could lose four straight league games for the first time since September 2018.
- Tanjong Pagar could go three games unbeaten for the first time since a three-game winning streak back in October 2014.
- Tanjong Pagar are still waiting for their first win since defeating Harimau Muda B 5-0 in October 2014.
- Hougang are undefeated in the last four encounters at Hougang Stadium since their predecessors Sengkang Marine lost 1-0 on 9 May, 2003.
Win-or-bust for Sailors’ faint title hopes
Young Lions vs Lion City Sailors | 29 Nov | 5.30pm | Jurong West | Singtel Ch 112, StarHub Ch 201
Gabriel Quak and Shahdan Sulaiman have been key figures for the Sailors
Team news: Young Lions midfielder Hami Syahin came off early in the 2-0 defeat to Albirex due to injury and may not recover in time to feature against his former club.
As for the Sailors, young playmaker Saifullah Abkar is back from suspension but league top scorer Stipe Plazibat could be rested for this due to a niggling hamstring problem – anything less than a win will likely snuff out their slim title hopes.
- The Sailors have scored in 10 out of 11 games this season.
- There have been three or more goals scored in the Sailors’ last five games.
- Young Lions have failed to keep a clean sheet this season.
- Young Lions have won just out of their last five matches.
- Young Lions are win-less in the last 10 league encounters as the designated home team since a 2-1 comeback victory in May 2010 at Jalan Besar. Shahril Ishak was a starter for the Sailors’ predecessor Home United in that game.
Can Webb-less Stags retake initiative in title race?
Albirex Niigata (S) vs Tampines Rovers | 29 Nov | 5.30pm | Jurong East | Singtel Ch 113, StarHub Ch 202
Another clean sheet for Kei Okawa will massively boost Albirex’s title hopes
Team news: In-form Albirex are in a clean bill of health, with no major injuries or suspensions. For Tampines, they will go into this crucial six-pointer without Canadian talisman Jordan Webb – who is serving the last of his two-match suspension – once again. A win will mean they overtake the White Swans and take a one-point advantage with two games to go.
- Albirex have won five straight games since a 2-0 loss to Tampines in end-October – that was their only defeat of the season as well.
- Tampines have scored in 31 straight SPL games.
- Albirex are the last team to stop the Stags from scoring, in a 0-0 draw at Our Tampines Hub in March 2019.
- Albirex have a chance to win six straight games for the first time since May 2018 – they won their first 17 games en route to winning the title that season.
- Tampines have lost their last seven visits in all competitions to Jurong East since a 1-0 win in November 2015.
- Albirex have lost just three out of their last 59 games in all competitions at the venue.
- Albirex have kept four clean sheets in five home games this season.
- Tampines’ Boris Kopitovic has five goals in his last five outings, while Albirex’s Tomoyuki Doi has scored eight in 11 this season.
- Both sides’ goalkeepers Kei Okawa and Syazwan Buhari have the joint-most clean sheets, with six.