Singapore Premier League • May 29, 2019
Singapore Premier League Week 12: Roundup
SINGAPORE, 29 MAY 2019 – Despite dropping points against Albirex Niigata (S), Brunei DPMM extended their lead at the top to eight points after Hougang United’s shock loss to Warriors FC. Tampines Rovers’ struggles continued after being held by Eastern rivals Geylang International, while Home United produced a superb second-half fightback to down Balestier Khalsa. We recap the weekend’s action below…
Albirex 0-0 DPMM | Jurong East | 24 May
Lightning can strike twice, as proven by this fixture ending in a stalemate – just slightly over two months after it happened at the same venue. Albirex shut out the league’s leading scorer Andrei Varankou and had a couple of good chances but failed to put them away. Daizo Horikoshi’s fierce 20-yard drive in the first half was tipped over, while Hiroyoshi Kamata fired into the side netting after rounding Wardun Yussof after the break as the visitors stayed unbeaten.
- Albirex are now unbeaten in 46 games at home in all competitions.
- DPMM are on a club-record unbeaten run of 18 league games, including a record 11-game unbeaten away streak.
- DPMM have not defeated Albirex in their past nine encounters in all competitions.
- DPMM have kept six clean sheets in 11 games.
- Albirex and Young Lions are the only sides that Varankou has not scored against this season.
Albirex XI: Kengo Fukudome (GK), Shuhei Sasahara, Kaishu Yamazaki, Naruki Takahashi, Shoki Ohara, Kyoga Nakamura (C), Daichi Tanabe, Hiroyoshi Kamata, Noor Akid Nordin (Yoshikatsu Hiraga 75’), Daizo Horikoshi, Daniel Martens (Sota Sugiyama 46’).
Unused Subs: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Firas Irwan, Shunsuke Fukuda, Zamani Zamri.
DPMM XI: Wardun Yussof (GK) (C), Helmi Zambin, Charlie Clough, Hazwan Hamzah, Najib Tarif (Suhaimi Sulau 82’), Yura Indera Putera, Azwan Saleh (Awangku Fakharrazi 90’ +3), Blake Ricciuto, Abdul Mu’iz Sisa, Shah Razen Said (Razimee Ramlli 82’), Andrei Varankou.
Unused Subs: Haimie Nyaring (GK), Wafi Aminuddin, Azim Izamuddin, Hanif Hamir.
Warriors 3-2 Hougang | Jurong East | 25 May
Gabriel Quak 8’, Jonathan Behe 52’, 86’ | Amir Zalani 38’, Hafiz Sujad 77’
Warriors are now on a roll, with a third straight win pushing them off the foot of the table to seventh. Hougang came from behind twice to draw level, first through Amir Zalani who tapped home late in the first half after good work by M. Anumanthan to cancel out Gabriel Quak’s early opener before Hafiz Sujad came off the bench to score after Jonathan Behe’s header off Sahil Suhaimi’s corner. Behe would prove to be the match-winner as he benefited from Khairulhin Khalid’s error to slide home from six yards out four minutes from time. Anumanthan was then sent off for a second bookable offence, adding salt to Hougang’s wounds as they fell to their fourth defeat of the campaign.
- Warriors have won three games on the trot for the first time since August 2018.
- Hougang have not registered two straight clean sheets since May 2017.
- Hougang dropped points from a draw position at half-time for the first time this season.
- Hafiz’s goal meant Hougang now have 11 different scorers, the most in the league.
- Faris Ramli has not scored for two games in a row for the first time this season.
- Stipe Plazibat has scored in just two out of 11 games for Hougang.
- Quak has scored for a third game running for the Warriors, while Behe has scored in four straight outings.
Warriors XI: Fashah Iskandar (GK), Tajeli Salamat, Delwinder Singh, Emmeric Ong, Daniel Shafiq (Ignatius Ang 46’), Ryhan Stewart, Poh Yi Feng, Faizal Raffi (Ammirul Emmran 67’), Sahil Suhaimi (R Aaravin 75’), Jonathan Behe, Gabriel Quak (C).
Unused Subs: Riki Kimura (GK), Yeo Hai Ngee, Khairul Nizam, Ifat Sha’aban.
Hougang XI: Khairulhin Khalid (GK), Kong Ho Won, Afiq Yunos, Jordan Vestering (Hafiz Sujad 60’), Fabian Kwok, Zulfahmi Arifin (C), M. Anumanthan, Nikesh Singh Sidhu (Afiq Noor 71’), Stipe Plazibat, Amir Zalani (Fazrul Nawaz 60’), Faris Ramli.
Unused Subs: Heng How Meng (GK), Shahfiq Ghani, Faiz Salleh, Timothy Yeo.
Tampines 1-1 Geylang | Our Tampines Hub | 25 May
Jordan Webb pen. 21’ | Shawal Anuar 31’
Tampines’ first league game after Khairul Amri’s departure ended in disappointment as they were held to a fourth straight draw. The Stags got off to a good start as Jordan Webb converted coolly from the spot after Yuki Ichikawa was adjudged to have brought down Taufik Suparno. However, Geylang rallied and levelled within 10 minutes as Shawal Anuar marked his first start with his first goal of 2019 by lashing home a left-footed shot from close range after Umar Akhbar’s right-wing cross was not cleared properly. Noor Ali’s side defended stoutly throughout and could have stolen the three points late on, but Shawal was foiled in a one-on-one opportunity with Syazwan Buhari.
- Tampines have failed to win their last six league games – their worst run of form since June 2001 when they went eight games without a victory.
- Geylang ended a run of four straight losses.
- Shawal’s strike meant Geylang scored a first-half goal for the first time this season.
- Geylang have not defeated Tampines in the last 13 league encounters since a 3-2 win in April 2015.
- Geylang have 10 points after their first 11 games – a point worse off their record at the same stage last season.
Tampines XI: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Akmal Azman, Madhu Mohana, Amirul Adli, Shahdan Sulaiman (C), Shah Shahiran, Zehrudin Mehmedović, Irwan Shah, Ryutaro Megumi, Taufik Suparno (Zulfadhmi Suzliman 83’), Jordan Webb.
Unused Subs: Zulfairuuz Rudy (GK), Zakri Ee, Joel Chew, Shagir Firaf, Hamizan Hisham, Elijah Lim.
Geylang XI: Zainol Gulam (GK), Anders Aplin, Yuki Ichikawa (C), Danish Irfan, Darren Teh, Syahiran Miswan, Firdaus Kasman, Umar Akhbar (Christopher van Huizen 61’), Amy Recha (Fareez Farhan 81’), Barry Maguire, Shawal Anuar.
Unused Subs: Hairul Syirhan (GK), Jufri Taha, Muhd Noor Ariff, Ifwat Ismail, Azri Suhaili.
Balestier 2-4 Home | Bishan | 26 May
Šime Žužul 42’, Sameer Alassane 45’+2 | Hafiz Nor 52’, 79’, Song Uiyoung 73’, Oliver Puflett 76’
The week ended with a bang as Home launched a stunning comeback to end a two-match losing streak. Balestier led by two at half time, with Croatian attacker Šime Žužul producing a deft lob off Illyas Lee’s long ball before crossing for Sameer Alassane to score his first ever SPL goal. The tide turned Home’s way shortly after the restart with Hafiz Nor reducing arrears with a close-range effort that came off both posts before going in. A three-goal blitz in six minutes then followed. Song Uiyoung volleyed them level before Oliver Puflett finished off fellow substitute Shahril Ishak’s delightful through pass to fire them ahead. Hafiz then thumped home his second from Song’s ball across the box to complete an incredible turnaround.
- This was Home’s first victory over Balestier in five encounters in all competitions.
- Balestier have lost three straight games for the first time since June 2018.
- Žužul scored for the first time since his brace in Balestier’s season-opening 4-1 win over Young Lions.
- Despite scoring four, Home have the third-worst attack – only Geylang and Young Lions have scored fewer goals.