Singapore Premier League • October 27, 2015

Steinebrunner: It Was A Harsh Result


Written by: Shawn Lim

Geylang International coach Jorg Steinebrunner was pleased with his side’s performance despite watching them go down 2-0 to Albirex Niigata (S) on Monday night at Jurong East Stadium.

The Eagles matched their opponents stride for stride before Syed Thaha turned Itsuki Yamada’s shot into his own net and Yusuke Mukai sealed the win for the hosts minutes later.

Steinebrunner admitted that his team did not deserve to win the game, but at the same time, felt that they should have at least gotten a point for their battling display.

“It was a very harsh result because we didn’t give much away defensively for 75 minutes,” said the German.

“We worked hard and we also looked quite decent going forward. In some occasions, we needed some cutting edge and better decision making in the final third.

“Generally, it was a good performance. I think character-wise and mentality-wise, the boys have given their all.

“Did we do enough to win the game? Not really. We had good opportunities in the first half, where I wished we had more players in the box.

“If the game had ended in draw, it would have been fine with us and I don’t think Albirex would have any complaints about it either.”

Steinebrunner was also happy that the visitors stifled the White Swans successfully in the first half and prevented the hosts from creating notable chances in the final third of the field.

However, he rued the way his charges conceded the goals in the second half that gave them no chance of mounting a comeback.

“Albirex is a good team with a lot of movement, technically all of these players are on a very good level” noted the 44-year-old.

“We made it hard for them in the first half we made them play on the flanks instead of in the middle, which is what they liked to do. They started to play long balls and that wasn’t their game.

“Tactically, from the back to the front, with Jozef (Kaplan) and Bruno (Castanheira) putting a lot of work defensively, we did well.

“But then again, we should have covered the inside (of the box) better and should have made the space between the centre-back and the full-back closer instead of letting the number six (Itsuki) getting in there.

“The second goal, I told the players that when we are asking for the ball in midfield, we will lose the ball if we play a square ball. Because of that, we gave the corner kick away.

“That situation where you are one-on-one, you are happy that you concede a corner kick. But then the second goal came in and at the end of the day, we have to look back at how the goal came.”

Meanwhile, Albirex coach Tatsuyuki Okuyama praised Geylang for coming prepared with a game plan and felt that it was an entertaining game of football.

“The fixtures are very tight for both clubs, but I think our teams did a good job today and worked very hard. I want to praise my players for taking the three points today,” said the Japanese.

“We couldn’t speed up the tempo in the first half because Geylang was sitting very deep and some people thought that we were playing a slow game.”

The victory for the White Swans leaves them in fourth place in the Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League standings with 36 points and 10 points behind leader Brunei DPMM, but Okuyama believes that his side can still snatch the title.

“We still have a possibility to win the league and as long as we have that possibility, we will do our best to win the title,” said the 39-year-old.

“We need to go to the top of the table to do that and since we are all professionals, I believe that we will fight to the end.”