League Cup • July 6, 2014
Confidence High in Tampines’ Camp
StarHub League Cup Group B
Geylang International vs Tampines Rovers
(July 7, Monday, 8.00pm, Jalan Besar Stadium)
Written by: Khalis Rifhan
The two traditional eastern giants of the Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League face off as Geylang International takes on Tampines Rovers at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Monday evening in their opening StarHub League Cup Group B tie.
This game has been moved to a neutral venue after the pitch at Bedok Stadium was temporarily unavailable due to maintenance.
Geylang have been having it tough in recent weeks as they slumped to a six-match winless streak. But their last three points was against the Stags at the same venue. Tampines debutant goalkeeper Justin Pasfield’s howler allowed Jorg Steinebrunner to snatch a memorable victory, but things have not been sweet since then.
The League Cup represents the Eagles only hope of a silverware this season as they were knocked out in the RHB Singapore cup quarter-final on penalty by Balestier Khalsa a week ago.
For Tampines Rovers, they are on a six-match unbeaten run since that fateful day against Geylang. But coach Rafi Ali will have to make do without key players Shaiful Esah and Shahdan Sulaiman, as the duo are away in Austria for a training trip with the national team.
Confidence is high in the Stags’ camp after hitting eight goals past a hapless Tanjong Pagar United over two legs in the Singapore Cup quarters. With Shahdan’s absence, Rafi is likely to slot in the speedy Jamil Ali on the flank.
It will be a keenly fought battle in midfield between Fabian Kwok (Geylang) and Jacob Butler (Tampines). Both players are tough tacklers and will provide stability to their midfield.
If Geylang are to take away anything from this match, they will have to to mute the lively Jozef Kaplan and Miljan Mrdakovic from getting space in the final third as the duo packs a punch from distance.
Geylang International – LLLLD
2/7/14 Geylang International 1-0 (AET) (3-4 penalties)Balestier Khalsa (RHB Singapore Cup Quarter-Final Second Leg)
28/6/14 Balestier Khalsa 2-1 Geylang International (RHB Singapore Cup Quarter-Final First Leg)
23/6/14 Hougang United 2-0 Geylang International
19/6/14 Geylang International 2-3 Harimau Muda
14/6/14 Brunei DPMM 0-0 Geylang International
Tampines Rovers – WWWDW
1/7/14 Tanjong Pagar United 1-4 Tampines Rovers (RHB Singapore Cup Quarter-Final Second Leg)
27/6/14 Tampines Rovers 4-2 Tanjong Pagar United (RHB Singapore Cup Quarter-Final First Leg)
24/6/14 Balestier Khalsa 0-2 Tampines Rovers
19/6/14 Tampines Rovers 1-1 Hougang United
13/6/14 Harimau Muda 0-1 Tampines Rovers