Singapore Premier League • April 20, 2014

Stewart Hails Incredible Team Ethics


Written by: Khalis Rifhan

Woodlands Wellington coach Darren Stewart remained true to his principles as he refused to single out any individual following their 2-1 triumph over Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League reigning champions Tampines Rovers.

“There is no way I can single out any player and I don’t do that. It is a great teamwork ethic,” said Stewart when he was asked about Taufiq Ghani’s role in the lead up to both goals.

“I am pleased with every single player out there.

“Our team work ethic was superb. We played decent football which was pleasing, but it is just unbelievable. I feel proud of the boys, it is incredible.”

Stewart then took a swipe at certain quarters that have criticised his squad after their back-to-back losses against the title contenders.

“People talk about the losing streak but it was against the Warriors, Home United and now we played Tampines,” added the former Balestier Khalsa coach.

“The last two matches, we were not embarrassed by the defeat.”

“Talk of a losing streak is ridiculous when we are up against these massive club. It would not be a shame even if we had lost tonight (Friday).”

Over in the Stags’ camp, coach Salim Moin cut a furious figure as he blasted his team’s performance.

“I feel disappointed and my team is overconfident and I told them many times that they need to be consistent,” said Salim. “Because of this, we dominated the game and forgot how to defend. True enough, two counter attacks and they scored the goals.”

“I always believed that the champions can be beaten. Let us forget about this game and the boys know next Tuesday is an important game.”

Tampines will return to continental action next week in the AFC Cup competition.

Currently in second spot in Group H on six points, a draw against Myanmar’s outfit Nay Pyi Daw is enough to see the Stags through second round.

Putting aside the defeat, Salim hopes his players will prepare themselves for the crucial match.

“I hope my team can progress to the second round and also for the good of Singapore’s football. At least the team will feel proud for the Singapore’s flag,” explained the former Singapore international.

“I still have trust in them. Definitely there will be a different kind of players’ attitude and approach to the game in the AFC Cup game next Tuesday.”