Singapore Cup • November 6, 2014

Kean Pleased To Finally Taste Victory Over Stags


Written by: Muhammad Yazid

Brunei DPMM Steve Kean coach was happy to attain his first win over the Stags on Wednesday evening in the RHB Singapore Cup third/fourth playoffs.

The 2-1 triumph came courtesy of a Rodrigo Tosi brace, one of which came in the dying minutes of the game.

Prior to this game, DPMM had lost all three times when they met the Stags, the last one on the final day of the league proving the most damaging as it resulted in DPMM dropping to second.

“The last time we played them in the league last week, I said to my players that there was a psychological barrier,” Kean revealed. “That was because we could not look at both sides and see why we struggled when playing them.

“But tonight I told the players that I felt we can beat them. I am glad we won tonight because it takes away the psychological aspect of it.

“We have finally beaten Tampines. It is good progress to the club and had been a solid season.”

The former Blackburn Rovers manager was also elated that his team ended the 2014 campaign on a winning note.

“It is a great feeling when we win a game at the end of a season,” he continued, “Because, when we lose in football, it gives us a horrible feeling till the next win, for however long it may be.

“My players had put in real physical effort overcome the obstacles and finish the third in the Cup, second in the (Great Eastern Yeo’s)S.League, and first in the (StarHub) League Cup”

His counterpart, Rafi Ali, had to surrender defeat but the affable Tampines coach was still smiling as he gave an assessment of his team’s performance.

“Just like how we played very good football against Balestier Khalsa and DPMM last week, tonight we controlled the game,” Rafi said proudly.

“We managed to get behind defenders but just could not score. We cannot sit on a 1-0 lead to win a game, it only happens sometimes.

“DPMM is the kind of team which will not stop running, and with the hard work, they got the winning goal.”

The former Tampines skipper also felt that the chances his charges created were aplenty, as he went on to describe possibly the best chance of the evening before lauding his players.

“If Miljan Mrdakovic had scored the goal in the first half, it would have been a brilliant goal,” he explained.

“That was a brilliant combination play involving Ismadi Mukhtar, Shahdan Sulaiman and Mrdakovic. Fans came to watch this. It is really unfortunate that we did not score in that instance.

“I am really very happy with the attitude of my players throughout the whole season.”