Singapore Cup • August 24, 2018
DPMM stage stirring comeback to hold Warriors in Singapore Cup
Two second-half goals wiped out the four-time champions’ half-time advantage in the first round, first-leg tie
Brunei DPMM FC celebrate after scoring against Warriors FC.
SINGAPORE, 24 AUG 2018 – Warriors FC threw away the opportunity to bring an advantage into the second leg of their first round RHB Singapore Cup tie against Brunei DPMM FC after being held to a 2-2 draw at Jalan Besar Stadium on Thursday night.
It looked like the four-time champions were cruising to victory after leading 2-0 at the break through goals from Jonathan Behe and Ignatius Ang, but DPMM produced a rousing comeback to earn a share of the spoils thanks to strikes from Brian McLean and Volodymyr Priyomov.
Off a five-game unbeaten streak in the Great Eastern-Hyundai Singapore Premier League (SPL), Warriors started the game in confident fashion and managed to open the scoring after just eight minutes.
After Tajeli Salamat’s solo run was halted by Awangku Fakharrazi just outside the area, Behe stepped to curl home a superb effort that nestled into the bottom right corner for his 18th goal in all competitions this season.
Priyomov then lashed into the side netting from 20 yards out, but it was the Warriors who grew from strength to strength and eventually doubled their advantage through a good team move on 35 minutes.
Receiving Tajeli’s cross-field pass on the right, Emmeric Ong swiftly laid the ball off for Ammirul Emmran, who in turn released Ang. He needed just one touch to steady himself on the edge of the box, before firing a crisp shot into the left corner past the helpless DPMM goalkeeper Haimie Nyaring.
The visitors’ comeback began on 65 minutes. After a half-cleared free kick fell to Azwan Ali Rahman, he was allowed space to drive in a right-wing cross for Priyomov. The latter’s first-time volley was tipped onto the post by Warriors custodian Mukundan Maran, but McLean was on hand to tuck into an empty net to set up a nervy finale.
Encouraged, the Wasps piled on the pressure in the dying stages and their efforts paid off in the 84th minute.
Adi Said first wriggled free of two defenders before teeing up Priyomov, whose snapshot from the edge of the area somehow evaded Mukundan and flew in for his 14th goal in all competitions.
The Wasps could have made it 3-2 two minutes later, but Mukundan redeemed himself by tipping Priyomov’s spectacular left-footed volley from 20 yards onto the post.
It eventually ended all square and both sides meet again in the second leg at Choa Chu Kang Stadium on September 19 with the tie poised on a knife’s edge. They will also face each other in a league meeting at the same venue four days prior.
WHAT THEY SAID
DPMM Head Coach Rene Weber: “I told the players in the dressing room at half-time that ‘our team do not play like this’. We lost everything in the first half… we lost passes, we lost organisation. If Warriors scored more, we are finished.
“In the second half, we started to play football. Our goalkeeper took the ball and started passing to the defenders, whereas in the first half we just played the long ball. I’m happy with that and now we have another game (the second leg) to play.”
Warriors Head Coach Mirko Grabovac: “In the first half we played very well… But in the second half, we lost concentration and I don’t know what happened. We should have been 3-0 or 4-0 up; we played very good soccer and created good chances.
“I’m not happy that our fitness went down and we should have played a more compact shape at 2-0 up. But I’m still happy with how we played and there’s still the second leg to come.”
DPMM: Haimie Nyaring (GK), Awangku Fakharrazi, Abdul Aziz Tamit, Brian McLean, Suhaimi Sulau (Najib Tarif 76’), Yura Indera Putera (Azwan Saleh 46’), Hendra Azam, Azwan Ali Rahman (Abdul Azizi Rahman 79’), Adi Said, Volodymyr Priyomov, Shah Razen Said (C).
Unused subs: Wardun Yussof (GK), Reduan Petara, Abdul Hariz Herman, Nurikhwan Othman.
Warriors: Mukundan Maran (GK), Emmeric Ong, Kento Fukuda (C), Hafiz Sulaiman, Ismadi Mukhtar, Fadhil Noh, Ammirul Emmran (Khairul Nizam 89’), Ho Wai Loon, Ignatius Ang (Suria Prakash 63’), Tajeli Salamat (Delwinder Singh 75’), Jonathan Behe.
Unused subs: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Shamil Sharif, Sahil Suhaimi, Firdaus Kasman.