Singapore Premier League • August 25, 2022
2022 Singapore Premier League Matchweek 21: Roundup
Adam Swandi celebrates with Hafiz Nor after the latter scores for Lion City Sailors, 20 August 2022
SINGAPORE, 25 AUGUST 2022 – The Lion City Sailors remained three points clear at the top of the Singapore Premier League (SPL) after yet another landslide victory over Tanjong Pagar United, while Albirex Niigata (S) stayed close behind by defeating Tampines Rovers. Hougang United bounced back with a big win over Young Lions, while Geylang International continued their renaissance by defeating Balestier Khalsa. Tampines did end the week on a high as they edged Young Lions to climb to third. We recap all the action below…
White Swans win thriller
Albirex 4-2 Tampines | Jurong East | 19 August
Kodai Tanaka 4′, 29′, Ilhan Fandi 45’+2, 55′ | Boris Kopitović 11′, Kyoga Nakamura 22′
In a see-saw game, Tanaka slammed home the opener for Albirex after some poor marking before Tampines turned the game around through Kopitović’s unerring drive and Nakamura’s 25-yard howitzer. But the hosts responded strongly as Tanaka nodded in Tadanari Lee’s delivery to restore parity, before Ilhan produced a towering header off Daichi Omori’s deep cross to put them ahead. Ilhan’s second, which took a slight deflection, sealed the points for the White Swans.
- Albirex are now unbeaten in their last six encounters against Tampines.
- Albirex have scored 21 headed goals – at least 11 more than the next-most team.
- Ilhan has now scored 14 times in 14 games this season – one goal away from becoming the first local player to hit 15 since Faris Ramli netted 16 in 2019.
- Tanaka and Kopitović are now tied on 24 goals each in the Golden Boot race.
- Tanaka is two goals away from matching Tsubasa Sano’s club-record haul of 26 in a league season for Albirex.
- Kopitović has now scored eight goals in his last six appearances against Albirex.
- Kopitović is two goals away from matching the club-record haul of 26 in a league season for Tampines, achieved by Mirko Grabovac and Aleksandar Duric in 2005 and 2011 respectively.
- Nakamura has now equalled his 2021 tally of three goals.
Albirex: Takahiro Koga (GK), Jun Kobayashi (C), Reo Kunimoto, Keito Hariya (Mahiro Takahashi 90’), Daichi Omori, Masaya Idetsu, Kumpei Kakuta, Masahiro Sugita, Tadanari Lee (Kanato Fukazawa 54’), Ilhan Fandi (Nicky Melvin Singh 67’), Kodai Tanaka.
Unused subs: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Tatsuya Sambongi, Fairoz Hasan, Shota Ochiai, Zamani Zamri, Kenji Austin.
Tampines: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Christopher van Huizen, Irfan Najeeb, Shuya Yamashita, Amirul Haikal (Ryaan Sanizal 69’), Kyoga Nakamura, Iman Hakim (Taufik Suparno 56’), Syed Firdaus Hassan (Firdaus Kasman 69’), Ong Yu En, Yasir Hanapi (C), Boris Kopitović.
Unused subs: Danial Iliya (GK), Shameer Aziq, Ethan Pinto, Matthias Koesno, Amir Mirza, Anton Goh.
Sailors cruise again
Sailors 7-0 Tanjong Pagar | Jalan Besar | 20 August
Maxime Lestienne 10′, Hafiz Nor 45’+1, Gabriel Quak 53′, Kim Shin-wook 58′, Diego Lopes pen. 69′, 87′, Song Uiyoung 74′
After Lestienne combined well with Diego to open the scoring, Kim then set up Hafiz and Quak for clinical finishes before benefitting from a rebound to net his own. Lopes netted from the spot for the Sailors’ fifth before Song slammed home fellow substitute Faris Ramli’s cross to further extend their advantage. Lopes then rounded off the resounding victory with a fierce drive from outside the area.
- The Sailors and Albirex have scored 70 goals each in 21 matches this season.
- The Sailors have scored 19 goals against Tanjong Pagar across three meetings in 2022.
- Lopes is now up to eight goals for the season – his best-ever league tally, surpassing 2021’s record of six with Sailors and 2019/2020’s six with Rio Ave.
- Song scored his 10th league goal of the season – equalling his best-ever league tally from 2018 with Home United.
- Kim has now scored in each of his last four matches, accumulating a total of six goals and three assists.
- Two of Hafiz Nor’s goals this season have come against Tanjong Pagar.
- Faris’ last three assists have been for Song, and all have come as a substitute.
- Sailors’ Hassan Sunny kept his seventh league clean sheet of the season – joint-most with Geylang’s Zaiful Nizam.
- Tanjong Pagar’s Azim Akbar made his first professional start.
Sailors: Hassan Sunny (GK), Hafiz Nor, Hariss Harun (C), Pedro Henrique (Bill Mamadou 73’), Saifullah Akbar, Adam Swandi (M. Anumanthan 73’), Shahdan Sulaiman, Gabriel Quak (Faris Ramli 62’), Diego Lopes, Maxime Lestienne (Hami Syahin 73’), Kim Shin-wook (Song Uiyoung 66’).
Unused subs: Izwan Mahbud (GK), Amirul Adli, Iqram Rifqi, Naqiuddin Eunos.
Tanjong Pagar: Fashah Iskandar (GK), Shahrin Saberin, Raihan Rahman, Faritz Hameed (C) (Daniel Bennett 88’), Aqhari Abdullah, Rusyaidi Salime (Khairul Amri 79’), Faizal Raffi (Fathullah Rahmat 76’), Azim Akbar (Khairul Nizam 79’), Shodai Nishikawa, Mirko Šugić, Reo Nishiguchi.
Unused subs: Zharfan Rohaizad (GK), Emmeric Ong, Syukri Bashir, Naufal Ilham.
Cheetahs romp at home
Hougang Young Lions 5-1 Hougang | Hougang | 20 August
Shawal Anuar 22′, Kristijan Krajček 31′, Amy Recha 38′, Shahril Ishak 59′, Farhan Zulkifli 90’+2 | Abdul Rasaq 29′
Shawal’s emphatic opener for Hougang was cancelled out by Rasaq’s neat finish off Glenn Kweh’s low cross, but the Cheetahs pulled away again with Krajček turning home Lionel Tan’s flick-on before Amy converted Shawal’s cut-back. Krajček then laid on perfect balls for Shahril and Farhan to score long-awaited goals and complete a convincing win for Clement Teo’s side.
- Shahril’s and Farhan’s strikes meant Hougang have 14 different scorers this season – second-highest behind Sailors with 15.
- Shahril scored for the first time since December 2020 and in a 12th domestic season; it came 19 years and 47 days after his first league goal, which is the longest gap between any two goals ever scored in league history.
- Farhan scored his first goal since October 2020.
- Abdul Rasaq scored in back-to-back games for the first time.
Hougang: Aizil Yazid (GK), Muhaimin Suhaimi, Anders Aplin, Lionel Tan, Jordan Vestering (Hafiz Sujad 67’), Shahfiq Ghani (Fabian Kwok 89’), Kristijan Krajček, Shawal Anuar, Sahil Suhaimi (Amir Zalani 85’), Amy Recha (Farhan Zulkifli 89’), Shahril Ishak (C) (André Moritz 67’).
Unused subs: Mukundan Maran (GK), Afiq Noor, Faiz Salleh, Nazhiim Harman.
Young Lions: Ridhwan Fikri (GK) (C), Jordan Emaviwe, Syabil Hisham (Fairuz Fazli 71’) Syed Akmal, Danish Qayyum (Moritz Faizal Radewaldt 79’), Shah Shahiran (C), Amir Syafiz, Jared Gallagher (Joel Chew 46’), Glenn Kweh, Abdul Rasaq (Irfan Iskandar 88’), Khairin Nadim (Zikos Chua 46’).
Unused subs: Dylan Pereira (GK), Arshad Shamim, Ryu Hardy, Elijah Lim.
Eagles continue to rise
Geylang 3-0 Balestier | Our Tampines Hub | 21 August
Šime Žužul pen. 37′, 79′, Ariffin Noor 90’+3
Žužul converted the resulting spot-kick after Hazzuwan Halim was tripped in the box by Hairul Syirhan to put the Eagles ahead, before netting his second with a deft header off Vincent Bezecourt’s teasing cross. Super-sub Ariffin then nodded in off Fareez Farhan’s corner to round off a clean victory for the Eagles.
- Geylang have now lost just once in their last 10 matches.
- Žužul netted for an eighth straight game – one off his own nine-game streak, which he achieved in 2021.
- Geylang’s Zaiful Nizam kept his seventh league clean sheet of the season – joint-most with Sailors’ Hassan Sunny. He has kept the most shutouts in a season for the Eagles since 2017, when Syazwan Buhari kept nine.
- Ariffin scored just 73 seconds into his professional debut – he is the first player to score on his professional debut since Glenn Kweh did for the Young Lions in April 2021.
Geylang: Zaiful Nizam (GK)(C), Tajeli Salamat (Fareez Farhan 78’), Rio Sakuma, Faizal Roslan, Ilhan Noor (Ahmad Syahir 61’), Joshua Pereira, Huzaifah Aziz, Hazzuwan Halim (Ariffin Noor 90’+3), Takahiro Tezuka, Vincent Bezecourt, Šime Žužul.
Unused subs: Zulfairuuz Rudy (GK), Abdil Qaiyyim, Noor Ariff, Khairul Hairie, Kieran Teo, Azri Suhaili.
Balestier: Hairul Syirhan (GK), Aidil Johari (Ryan Praveen 46’), Madhu Mohana, Darren Teh (C), Delwinder Singh, Ensar Brunčević, Ho Wai Loon, Gareth Low (Asshukrie Wahid 46’), Ryoya Taniguchi, Ignatius Ang (Daniel Goh 46’), Kuraba Kondo.
Unused subs: Rudy Khairullah (GK), Aarish Kumar, Ammirul Emmran, Syukri Noorhaizam, Akmal Azman, Aiman Zavyan.
Stags up to third
Young Lions 0-1 Tampines | Jalan Besar | 24 August
Taufik Suparno 13′
Taufik’s early header off Irwan Shah’s corner proved to be the match-winner, although they also had goalkeeper Syazwan Buhari to thank for as he pulled off a couple of crucial saves to preserve the points for the Stags.
- Tampines kept just their second clean sheet in 21 matches this season.
- Young Lions have now conceded in their last 56 SPL matches.
- Tampines have now won their last eight meetings with Young Lions.
- Taufik has now scored five in his last five appearances against Young Lions.
Young Lions: Ridhwan Fikri (GK), Raoul Suhaimi (Danial Crichton 86’), Jordan Emaviwe, Syed Akmal, Danish Qayyum, Harhys Stewart (Jared Gallagher 68’), Amir Syafiz (Elijah Lim 68’), Shah Shahiran (C), Zikos Chua (Nor Hakim 86’), Glenn Kweh (Harith Kanadi 75’), Abdul Rasaq.
Unused subs: Dylan Pereira (GK), Joel Chew, Syahrul Sazali, Irfan Iskandar.
Tampines: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Irwan Shah (Ethan Pinto 90’+3), Irfan Najeeb, Shuya Yamashita, Amirul Haikal, Kyoga Nakamura, Iman Hakim (Firdaus Kasman 64’), Syed Firdaus Hassan, Taufik Suparno (Andrew Aw 88’), Yasir Hanapi (C), Boris Kopitović.
Unused subs: Danial Iliya (GK), Shameer Aziq, Ali Manaf, Matthias Koesno, Amir Mirza.