Singapore Premier League • October 31, 2015
Kogure Helps White Swans Keep Up Pursuit Of Third
Written by: Nigel Chin
Albirex Niigata (S) continued their chase for a top-three finish in the S.League with a hard-fought one goal victory over Warriors FC.
A superb strike from Fumiya Kogure in the second half secured the contest for the White Swans, who are now just a point behind Balestier Khalsa, the current occupants of the third spot.
The visitors got off to a bright start, opening the scoring just inside three minutes.
A corner from Kogure was nodded on by Kento Fujihara, before Yusuke Mukai applied the final touch from point-blank range to open the scoring.
The hosts could have equalised barely a minute later, but Hafiz Rahim’s free-kick was nodded wide by Marin Vidosevic.
Albirex winger Rion Taki then saw a fierce drive from range flashed just wide of the Warriors goal in the 17th minute, before Shi Jiayi sent an effort from similar range inches over the crossbar at the other end.
Warriors eventually got their equaliser in the 20th minute, with Fazrul netting his 18th goal of the season.
A header from Vidosevic from Miroslav Pejic was pushed away by Albirex custodian Yosuke Nozawa onto Fazrul’s path, and the Singapore international had the easy task to tapping it into the net.
Nozawa was made to work once more just seven minutes later with Hafiz Rahim finding the target from a set-piece, before Kogure went close with another long range shot just before half-time.
The visitors retook the lead 12 minutes into the second period, this time with Kogure brilliantly curling his free-kick around the wall into the bottom corner, with Warriors goalkeeper Nur Amin Malik left rooted to his spot.
Warriors almost equalised in the 62nd minute but the ball came off the post instead after Vidosevic beat Nozawa to the ball in the air, while Hafiz sent a bicycle kick well wide of the mark.
Both Vidosevic and Hafiz then sent long range efforts off target with time winding down, allowing Albirex to hold on for a vital win to continue their pursuit of third place in the standings.
Warriors FC: Nur Amin Malik, Syaqir Sulaiman (Azlan Abdul Razak 90’), Daniel Bennett (C), Marin Vidosevic, Irwan Shah, Thomas Beattie, Shi Jiayi (Emmeric Ong 27’), Miroslav Pejic, Karlo Ivancic, Hafiz Rahim, Fazrul Nawaz
Albirex Niigata (S): Yosuke Nozawa (GK)(C), Mikiya Yamada, Kento Fujihara, Takahiro Saito, Itsuki Yamada, Hikaru Mizuno, Shun Inaba, Yusuke Mukai, Fumiya Kogure, Rion Taki, Kento Nagasaki (Hikaru Yanagawa 90’)