News • July 14, 2016

The New Paper League Cup 2016: Record Winners DPMM Off To Resounding Start


Written by: Ryan Low

Brunei DPMM signalled their intentions for a fourth The New Paper League Cup trophy after thrashing Warriors FC 4-0 in their Group A opener at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Wednesday night.

All four goals came in the final 27 minutes of play, with the attacking trio of Paulo Sergio, Adi Said and Rafael Ramazotti (two) finding themselves on the scoresheet.

The Warriors were hindered by number of key absentees like Madhu Mohana, Hafiz Nor (away on international duty), Shaiful Esah and Hafiz Osman (suspensions), but did well to hold DPMM in the first 45 minutes

Their task to topple the three-time winners were made harder though, with first-choice custodian Yazid Yasin having to come off at half time due to injury.

The less experienced Zainol Gulam came on for the second half and did well to tip over Adi’s goalbound header from point-blank range minutes after his introduction.

However, he was left helpless in the 62nd minute as DPMM broke the deadlock via a well-worked move. Sergio teed up Ramazotti, who in turn killed the Warriors defence with a superb back-heel to lay it on for the former to finish off from unmissable range.

Buoyed by that long-awaited strike, it took just six minutes for the Wasps to score again. Ramazotti messed up Najib Tarif’s teasing left-wing cross, but regained composure at the nick of time to set up Adi to slot home from six yards out.

The influential Ramazotti was not to be denied as he finally netted 12 minutes before the end, flicking home Adi’s neat ball in from the right.

It was the same combination on the stroke of full time, with the towering Brazilian benefiting from Adi’s left-wing cross to nod past a rooted Zainol for his second goal and to wrap up the scoring.

The result meant DPMM are now top of Group A, just above Tampines Rovers who overcame Hougang United 6-4 on the same night. Meanwhile the Warriors are bottom of the group.

The eventual top two teams will advance into the semi-finals, while the bottom two teams will go into the Plate semi-finals.

Brunei DPMM head coach Steve Kean: “There was no passing rhythm in the first half and we had to wait till the 43rd minute to string together five consecutive passes. In the second half, we changed tactically to put an extra man in midfield and get the ball wider.

“That worked, with Sergio showing some good movement to score the first goal. It’s been a tough season of transition for us, but the team is improving as the season progresses. To be the first club to win this competition four times will be a big boost for us.”

Warriors FC caretaker coach Razif Onn: “In the first half, we managed to close down on Ramazotti and Sergio. As long as you contain them, it’s quite safe. But in the second half, DPMM changed their style of play and played more passes on the ground.

“That created a lot of confusion for my defence and that’s how we conceded the first goal. Fatigue then set in to cause lapses of concentration, so we ended up conceding more goals. (Jonathan) Behe did not play due to a knee injury and we shall see if he can play against Tampines on Sunday.”

Brunei DPMM: Wardun Yussof (GK), Brian McLean, Azwan Salleh, Paulo Sergio, Najib Tarif, Maududi Hilmi, Rosmin Kamis (C) (Hendra Azam 80’), Helmi Zambin, Rafael Ramazotti, Adi Said, Yura Indera Putera

Warriors FC: Yazid Yasin (GK) (Zainol Gulam 46’), Syaqir Sulaiman, Ismail Yunos, Kento Fukuda (C), Emmeric Ong, Poh Yi Feng, Nikola Rak, Ridhuan Muhammad (Fazli Jaffar 85’), Hafsyar Farkhan, Hafiz Rahim (Andy Ahmad 79’), Marijan Suto