Singapore Premier League • May 4, 2023
2023 Singapore Premier League Matchweek 10: Preview
DPMM against Tanjong Pagar in Matchweek 4, where the Bees beat the Jaguars 2-1.
SINGAPORE, 4 MAY 2023 – After a two-week break, the Singapore Premier League resumes tomorrow as Tampines Rovers aim to extend their unbeaten streak with a win against Balestier Khalsa. Meanwhile, Marko Kraljevic has been appointed as Hougang United’s interim head coach and will hope to get off on the right foot when they meet Albirex Niigata (S).
An exciting mid-table clash gets underway on Sunday when Tanjong Pagar United and Brunei DPMM, who are sixth and seventh in the standings respectively, meet at Jalan Besar stadium. Elsewhere, a well-rested Geylang International side faces the Lion City Sailors, who look to right their wrongs with a win after they suffered a last-minute draw last matchweek.
Tampines Rovers aim to extend unbeaten streak
Tampines Rovers vs Balestier Khalsa | 5 May | 7.45pm | Our Tampines Hub | Singtel Ch111, StarHub ChHS2
Team news: Shah Shahiran remains suspended, following a case of violent conduct with Hougang United’s Brian Ferreira on 18 April 2023.
Tigers’ Shuhei Hoshino is now fit to play. Two players will also be sidelined due to injury – Puvan Raj, who suffered a knee injury during the match against Geylang International on 12 April, as well as defender Iqram Rifqi, who suffered a hamstring pull.
- Tampines forward Boris Kopitovic is the fixture’s top goalscorer with 15 goals in 11 games.
- The Stags have only lost to the Tigers once in their past 10 clashes – a 2-5 loss during the 2021 SPL season.
- Balestier Khalsa have conceded the most goals, 25, of all clubs this season.
- Tigers midfielder Ryoya Taniguchi has reclaimed top position in the scoring charts after netting a brace last matchweek against Tanjong Pagar United.
Boris Kopitovic celebrating after scoring a late penalty, 16 April 2023.
Interim manager takes the reins
Hougang United vs Albirex Niigata (S) | 6 May | 6.00pm | Jalan Besar Stadium | Singtel Ch111, StarHub ChHS2
Team news: Both Brain Ferreira and Nazrul Nazari will continue serving their suspension. Brian Ferreira was struck with a two-match suspension, following a case of violent conduct with Tampines Rovers’ Shah Shahiran on 18 April 2023. Midfielder Ajay Robson is currently in Cambodia with the Men’s U22s for the 32nd SEA Games.
Nicky Singh is out for international duty with the Men’s U22s at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia, while Zamani Zamri remains injured.
- Hougang United are on a seven-game winless streak – their worst run of form since August 2018 where they went on a nine-game winless streak.
- Marko Kraljevic, the Cheetah’s interim head coach, previously managed Balestier Khalsa for the most of a seven-year period from 2014 to 2021. In that time, he managed only three wins from 26 games against Albirex Niigata (S).
- Albirex Niigata (S) have only conceded three goals this season, the least of all clubs. They have also conceded not more than one goal in any of their matches so far.
- Albirex forward Keito Komatsu is yet to start for the White Swans and has recorded the most attacking contributions – three goals and one assist – of any substitute this season.
Marko Kraljevic during one of Hougang’s training sessions. Photo courtesy of Hougang United.
Jaguars on the prowl
Brunei DPMM vs Tanjong Pagar United | 7 May | 6.00pm | Jalan Besar Stadium | Singtel Ch111, StarHub ChHS1
Team news: Midfielder Fathullah Rahmat joins the Men’s U22s at the 32nd SEA Games in Cambodia. Faritz Abdul Hameed is currently recovering from his ankle surgery and will remain sidelined till the mid of the SPL 2023 season.
- Tanjong Pagar United have scored at least one goal in all their away games this season.
- Jaguars centre-back Shakir Hamzah scored the most goals among all defenders so far this season with three goals in eight games.
- Brunei DPMM and Tanjong Pagar United are two of only three clubs to have missed a penalty this season.
- Brunei DPMM are on a three-game winless streak after Matchweek 9. The last time they were on a three-game winless streak was back in July 2018, where they went on to draw two more games before recording a win.
Shakir Hamzah in action, 16 April 2023.
Eagles ready to swoop up all three points
Geylang International vs Lion City Sailors | 7 May | 6.00pm | Our Tampines Hub | Singtel Ch112, StarHub ChHS2
Team news: Sailors will have to make do without the likes of striker Abdul Rasaq as well as defenders Nur Adam and Bill Mamadou, who are on international duty in Cambodia for the 32nd SEA Games. Izwan Mahbud remains injured, while Danish Qayyum has now recovered fully from his injury and could be up for selection.
- Lion City Sailors is the only club to win all their home games heading into Matchweek 10.
- Sailors forward Abdul Rasaq has been the most efficient goalscorer this season, finding the back of the net every 57 minutes.
- The Sailors currently hold the best shot conversion rate, 23.6%, in the league.
- Eagles captain Joshua Pereira will make his 30th appearance for the Eagles if he plays this Sunday.
Joshua Pereira in action, 28 February 2023.