News Singapore Premier League • October 20, 2020
Singapore Premier League Week 5: Roundup
SINGAPORE, 20 OCTOBER 2020 – The 2020 AIA Singapore Premier League (SPL) returned with a bang after more than 200 days away as title challengers Lion City Sailors and Albirex Niigata (S) racked up big wins against Geylang International and Young Lions respectively. Hougang United pulled off the shock of the round by upsetting Tampines Rovers, while Balestier Khalsa continued their fine start to the season by edging out Tanjong Pagar United. We recap the action below…
Jaguars still waiting for first win
Tanjong Pagar 0-1 Balestier | Jurong East | 17 October
Ensar Brunčević 50’
A scrappy affair was settled by a solitary goal early in the second half when the towering Serbian defender Brunčević was left unmarked at the far post to nod home Kristijan Krajček’s inswinging corner. Tanjong Pagar rallied towards the end, but substitute Zulkiffli Hassim and captain Faritz Hameed did not make the most of their opportunities to leave them win-less in their four matches to date.
- Balestier are unbeaten in four league matches for the first time since April 2018.
- Balestier have now won the last five encounters.
- All of Brunčević’s three goals this season have come inside the six-yard box, with this being the second one off Krajček’s corner.
- Krajček got an assist for a third game in a row.
- Zulkiffli and Raihan Rahman made their Tanjong Pagar debuts against their former employers.
Tanjong Pagar: Fashah Iskandar (GK), Faritz Hameed (C), Yann Motta, Syabil Hisham, Takahiro Tanaka, Shodai Nishikawa, Suhairi Sabri (Ammirul Emmran 75’), Raihan Rahman, Nashrul Amin (Suria Prakash 46’), Ignatius Ang (Luiz Junior 87’), Hadiputradila Saswadimata (Zulkiffli Hassim 54’).
Unused subs: Joey Sim (GK), Kenji Rusydi (GK), Ribiyanda Saswadimata.
Balestier: Zaiful Nizam (GK, C), Keshav Kumar (Jufri Taha 46’), Fadli Kamis, Ensar Brunčević, Ahmad Syahir, Gaye Sameer (Zulfadhmi Suzliman 46’), Elijah Lim (Faizal Raffi 67’), Kristijan Krajček, Hazzuwan Halim (Aiman Zavyan 90’), Šime Žužul, Shuhei Hoshino.
Unused subs: Zacharial Leong (GK), Martyn Mun (GK), Danish Uwais.
Cheetahs put spanner in Tampines’ works
Tampines 1-2 Hougang | Our Tampines Hub | 17 October
Irwan Shah 60’ | Sahil Suhaimi 15’, Farhan Zulkifli 18’
Not many tipped Hougang to get a result against the league leaders after top scorer Stipe Plazibat left the club in the mid-season transfer window, but Sahil stepped up in their shock victory. After his stunning free-kick from a tight angle clanked in off the post, the advantage was swiftly doubled with Farhan prodding in from a yard out after good work by debutant Naufal Azman down the right. Tampines did pull a goal back through Irwan’s looping header off Kyoga Nakamura’s intelligent lofted ball, but the Stags were denied an equaliser by an offside call and then the post from Nakamura’s fierce strike late on.
- This is Tampines’ first loss at OTH in eight games.
- The last was a 2-1 defeat to Warriors FC in July 2019, in which Sahil was also on the scoresheet.
- Tampines converted just one of their 25 shot attempts, while Hougang scored two out of six.
- Hougang are still yet to keep a clean sheet after seven games in all competitions in 2020.
- Sahil has scored five goals in his last six appearances against Tampines.
- Farhan ended a run of 11 league games without a goal.
- Tampines’ Baihakki Khaizan made his first SPL appearance since November 2017 – his last was also against Hougang in a 1-1 draw with Warriors.
Tampines: Syazwan Buhari (GK), Hamizan Hisham (Taufik Suparno 46’), Madhu Mohana, Daniel Bennett (C), Syahrul Sazali, Kyoga Nakamura, Amirul Adli (Baihakki Khaizan 70’), Irwan Shah (Huzaifah Aziz 78’), Shah Shahiran, Jordan Webb, Boris Kopitovic.
Unused subs: Zulfairuuz Rudy (GK), Ryaan Sanizal, Fazrul Nawaz, Danish Siregar.
Hougang: Ridhuan Barudin (GK), Nazrul Nazari, Anders Aplin, Lionel Tan, Zachary Anderson, Hafiz Sujad, M. Anumanthan (Fabian Kwok 39’), Charlie Machell (Maksat Dzhakybaliev 86’), Naufal Azman (Muhaimin Suhaimi 46’), Farhan Zulkifli (Shawal Anuar 68’), Sahil Suhaimi (Shahfiq Ghani 68’).
Unused subs: Daniel Ong (GK), Nikesh Singh.
Stipe’s debut brace steers Sailors to first win
Lion City Sailors 4-0 Geylang International | Bishan | 18 October
Stipe Plazibat 8’, 84’, Song Uiyoung pen. 45’+3, Shahril Ishak 89’
Plazibat hit the ground running for his new side just eight minutes in by diverting in from three yards out after Tajeli Salamat had knocked on Shahdan Sulaiman’s outswinging corner. Geylang’s hopes of a comeback were extinguished on the stroke of half-time when goalkeeper Zainol Gulam given a straight red for a late tackle on Arshad Shamim, with Song converting the resulting penalty. The Sailors then added gloss to the scoreline with two late goals, with Plazibat benefitting from some unselfish work by Gabriel Quak to score his second before veteran Shahril tapped in Aqhari Abdullah’s low cross.
- This is Geylang’s second 4-0 loss of the season.
- Three out of the six red cards this season have been awarded to Geylang.
- Plazibat has scored braces in successive games at the same stadium.
- Plazibat has now scored seven goals against Geylang since 2016.
- Shahril has scored in his last five appearances against Geylang (seven goals in total) since 2018.
- Song has now scored in eight straight SPL seasons.
Sailors: Hassan Sunny (GK, C), Aqhari Abdullah, Abdil Qaiyyim, Tajeli Salamat, Naqiuddin Eunos, Shahdan Sulaiman, Song Uiyoung, Saifullah Akbar (Adam Swandi 62’), Hafiz Nor (Izzdin Shafiq 72’), Arshad Shamim (Gabriel Quak 62’), Stipe Plazibat (Shahril Ishak 86’).
Unused subs: Rudy Khairullah (GK), Kaishu Yamazaki, Haiqal Pashia.
Geylang: Zainol Gulam (GK), Darren Teh, Yuki Ichikawa (C), Nurullah Hussein (Adam Hakeem 46’), Harith Kanadi (Fareez Farhan 79’), Barry Maguire, Safirul Sulaiman (Hairul Syirhan 45’), Firdaus Kasman, Nur Luqman Rahman (Iqbal Hussain 46’), Christopher Van Huizen, Zikos Chua (Khairul Nizam 46’).
Unused subs: Shahrin Saberin, Kamolidin Tashiev.
Ruthless White Swans gunning for the top
Young Lions 0-4 Albirex | Jurong West | 18 October
Ryoya Taniguchi 7’, Reo Nishiguchi 12’, Ryosuke Nagasawa 65’, Tomoyoki Doi 73’
With up to nine players missing due to National Service commitments, this proved to be a step too far for the Young Lions. Albirex signalled their intent from the get-go with Taniguchi leaping like a salmon to power home debutant Fairoz Hasan’s inch-perfect right-wing cross, before Nishiguchi executed an acrobatic finish off captain Kazuki Hashioka’s cross. Nagasawa then sealed a solo run with a rasping drive from the edge of the box before Doi benefitted from Taniguchi’s clever lofted pass to thump home an unstoppable drive from eight yards out.
- This is Young Lions’ worst defeat since losing 4-0 to Tampines in May 2019.
- Young Lions lost four straight games for the first time since June 2018.
- All four Albirex matches this season have ended in four goals.
- Nishiguchi has scored in four straight games, while Taniguchi is the third player to score and assist in the same game this season.
- Fairoz and Ong Yu En’s appearances meant 11 Singaporeans have now featured for Albirex.
Young Lions: Nurshafiq Zainal (GK), Sahffee Jubpre, Jacob Mahler (C), Syed Akmal, Shahib Masnawi, Harhys Stewart (Bill Mamadou 41’), Nur Adam Abdullah, Shahrulnizam Mazlan (Marc Ryan Tan 72’), Zamani Zamri, Amirul Haikal, Khairin Naidim (Fikri Junaidi 82’)
Unused subs: Ridhwan Fikri (GK), Putra Anugerah (GK).
Albirex: Kei Okawa (GK), Hiroyoshi Kamata (Mahiro Takahashi 81’), Kazuki Hashioka (C), Kotaro Takeda, Gareth Low (Yasuhiro Hanada 46’), Kenta Kurishima, Ryoya Taniguchi (Rio Sakuma 81’), Ryosuke Nagasawa (Ong Yu En 86’), Fairoz Hasan (Ryuya Mitsuzuka 46’), Reo Nishiguchi, Tomoyoki Doi.
Unused subs: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Kenji Austin.