Singapore Premier League • August 22, 2014

Both Coaches Not Surprised By DPMM’s Comeback


Written by: Muhammad Yazid

DPMM had to make a comeback twice in the 3-3 draw with Balestier Khalsa on Thursday evening at Toa Payoh Stadium, but both coaches were not surprised by the herculean feat the visitors did.

Trailing on two occasions – once by two goals at half-time and by another in the 70th minute – DPMM coach Steve Kean had in fact thought his side were able to make a comeback win after levelling matters the first time round.

“I believed that we can win but unfortunately we failed,” Kean said.

“We go behind two goals and we managed to come back and not hide. We normally do score goals and at 2-2 after we made the comeback, I really thought we were going to win the game.”

“We had a few chances to win it but we really put too much pressure as a team almost everywhere. It is hard to score four goals to get three points away from home.”

Kean made known his displeasure too with his defence, as this was the first time they conceded more than two goals in an S.League match this season.

“From the way we defended, I think we were lucky to get away with a point,” he shared.

“We were a bit slow in the first half and the goals we conceded we poor. The back four was very quiet and we did not deal with the presence of Goran Ljubojevic.

“His is handful and he bullied us all night. Credits to Balestier for their good service to him because he caused us problems.”

The former Blackburn Rovers manager then suggested that the absence of their skipper Rosmin Kamis and striker Roy O’Donovan could have played a part on the performance of his side.

“We missed our marquee signing and the most experienced local player who is the vocal point of the locals. We were quite quiet, so there was a lack of organisation tonight,” he commented.

His counterpart, Marko Kraljevic shared similar sentiments, although he was equally disappointed by not claiming maximum points.

“We gave away the two-goal lead and had problems dealing the quality crosses,” he mentioned, before praising his opponents.

“DPMM is lucky to come back with two goals but I know that they are capable of that. They had nothing to lose and kept pushing.

“At 2-2, I still thought we could win. That scoreline was also not good enough for them and they wanted to win the game.”

“The boys were getting tired which led to a few mistakes a times and we opened up a lot behind.”

However, the Croatian was contented with the mindset of his players.

“I am happy with the mental strength. When our opponents came back with two goals, we will usually start going down to 3-2 but today it was an excellent job.”