Singapore Premier League • March 23, 2020
Singapore Premier League Week 4: Roundup
SINGAPORE, 23 MARCH 2020 – There were goals galore as Tampines Rovers rolled past Lion City Sailors, while title rivals Hougang United and Albirex Niigata (S) were held by Balestier Khalsa and Tanjong Pagar United respectively. We recap the action below…
Leaky Cheetahs drop points again
Balestier 2-2 Hougang | Bishan | 18 March
Šime Žužul 38’, Shuhei Hoshino 65’ | Stipe Plazibat 48’, pen. 58’
It was another disappointing outing for Hougang, who dropped points for a second week running. Žužul gave Balestier the lead by slotting in the rebound off Kristijan Krajček’s parried snapshot. The Cheetahs rallied through Plazibat, who was set up by Nazrul Nazari. The 30-year-old then converted a penalty after Farhan Zulkifli was brought down. The Tigers levelled through Hoshino, who was first to the rebound after Ahmad Syahir’s speculative 35-yard shot crashed off the bar. Shahfiq Ghani could have won it for Hougang deep into injury time, but his free-kick was turned around the post by Zaiful.
- Hougang are still waiting for a clean sheet after six competitive games this season.
- Hougang’s Khairulhin has yet to keep a clean sheet in his last 12 competitive games since a 1-0 win against Home United in April 2019.
- Plazibat now leads the SPL scoring charts with five goals.
- Balestier are unbeaten for three straight league games for the first time since July 2018.
Balestier XI: Zaiful Nizam (GK)(C), Fadli Kamis (Jufri Taha 67’), Khalili Khalif, Ensar Brunčević, Ahmad Syahir, Hazzuwan Halim, Aarish Kumar (Azizi Rahman 87’), Kristijan Krajček, Karthik Raj (Faizal Raffi 55’), Šime Žužul, Shuhei Hoshino.
Unused Subs: Zacharial Leong (GK), Yeo Hai Ngee, Elijah Lim, Aiman Zayvan.
Hougang XI: Khairulhin Khalid (GK), Anders Aplin, Zachary Anderson, M. Anumanthan, Nazrul Nazari, Fabian Kwok, Nikesh Singh Sidhu (Shahfiq Ghani 46’), Afiq Noor (Sahil Suhaimi 72’), Jordan Vestering, Farhan Zulkifli (Shawal Anuar 59’), Stipe Plazibat.
Unused Subs: Heng How Meng (GK), Maksat Dzhakybaliev, Hafiz Sujad, Alif Iskandar.
Stags show no mercy in title assault
Tampines 4-0 Sailors | Our Tampines Hub | 18 March
Boris Kopitovic 60’, Zehrudin Mehmedović 70’, Jordan Webb 79’, Shah Shahiran 82’
Tampines made a huge statement of intent against their fellow contenders as a second-half blitz blew the Sailors away. Montenegrin forward Kopitovic tapped in Webb’s low cross to break the deadlock before Mehmedović curled in a beautiful effort from the edge of the area. Webb then smashed the ball in from a tight angle, before teeing up Shah for a similar finish to leave the visitors with a point from their first two league matches.
- This is Tampines’ biggest win since beating Young Lions 4-0 in May 2019.
- Tampines have now lost just one out of their last 19 league matches at OTH.
- Tampines’ Webb has scored six goals in eight competitive games this season.
Tampines XI: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Hamizan Hisham (Huzaifah Aziz 46’), Daniel Bennett (C), Amirul Adli, Syahrul Sazali, Kyoga Nakamura, Shah Shahiran, Irwan Shah (Shannon Stephen 80’), Zehrudin Mehmedović, Jordan Webb, Boris Kopitovic (Danish Siregar 87’)
Unused Subs: Zulfairuuz Rudy (GK), Safirul Sulaiman, Fathullah Rahmat, Haziq Mikhail.
Sailors XI: Hassan Sunny (GK)(C), Zulqarnaen Suzliman, Abdil Qaiyyim, Kaishu Yamazaki (Tajeli Salamat 74’), Naqiuddin Eunos, Shahdan Sulaiman, Song Uiyoung (Shahril Ishak 83’), Gabriel Quak, Hafiz Nor, Andrew Pengelly, Haiqal Pashia (Izzdin Shafiq 58’).
Unused Subs: Rudy Khairullah (GK), Iqram Rifqi, Ho Wai Loon, Saifullah Akbar.
Spirited Jaguars denied first win
Tanjong Pagar 2-2 Albirex | Jurong East | 20 March
Shodai Nishikawa 17’, Yann Motta 80’ | Reo Nishiguchi 58, Tomoyuki Doi 83’
They may not have won yet in their three games since returning to the SPL, but Tanjong Pagar have earned the respect of many with their spirited displays. A well-worked move Shodai Nishikawa finish off Luiz Junior’s low ball but Delwinder Singh’s dismissal gave Albirex the numerical advantage. Nishiguchi tapped in Kazuki Hashioka’s low cross to level but the Swans were stunned when Motta struck a stupendous 25-yard free kick. That lead lasted just three minutes though – Doi’s header off Ryosuke Nagasawa’s lofted ball salvaged the point for the visitors.
- Albirex have come from behind twice to claim a point in their last two games.
- Albirex’s Nishiguchi has scored in each of their three games so far.
- Tanjong Pagar are still win-less against Albirex after 15 league meetings.
Tanjong Pagar XI: Fashah Iskandar (GK), Faritz Hameed (C), Yann Motta, Delwinder Singh, Syabil Hisham, Ignatius Ang, Shodai Nishikawa, Suhairi Sabri, Nashrul Amin (Hadiputradila Saswadimata 18’), Syahadat Masnawi (Suria Prakash 61’), Luiz Junior (Farihin Farkhan 81’).
Unused Subs: Kenji Rusydi (GK), Syariful Haq Sapari, Ribiyanda Saswadimata.
Albirex XI: Kei Okawa (GK), Kazuki Hashioka (C), Rio Sakuma, Kotaro Takeda, Yasuhiro Hanada, Kenta Kurishima, Iman Hakim (Ryoya Taniguchi 46’), Ryosuke Nagasawa, Daniel Goh (Hiroyoshi Kamata 56’), Reo Nishiguchi, Tomoyoki Doi.
Unused Subs: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Aizil Yazid (GK), Mahiro Takahashi, Zamani Zamri, Ong Yu En.