News • July 27, 2016

The New Paper League Cup 2016: Wasps Grind Out Victory Over Protectors To Reach Final


Written by: Shawn Lim

Brunei DPMM will meet Albirex Niigata (S) in The New Paper League Cup 2016 final after overcoming Home United 1-0 at Jalan Besar Stadium on Tuesday night in the semi-final.

Having been thrashed 5-0 by the Protectors in their previous meeting, the designated hosts came into the match with a game plan to pack the 18-yard box every time they lost the ball and force Home to play on the wings.

It worked to great effect as the Wasps nullify every attack by their opponents and it was only the poor finishing by Home that prevented them from overturning Rafael Ramazotti’s opener for the Bruneians.

Home coach Philippe Aw had promised before the game that the Protectors would continue playing their entertaining football as the club seeked to claim their first ever League Cup and true enough, the visitors did not disappoint.

It took just six minutes for the Protectors to create an opening when Juma’at Jantan found Ken Ilso with his clearance and the Dane dribbled past two defenders to put in a low cross for Sufianto Salleh, who was unable to get a touch on the ball at full-stretch.

Home came close again five minutes later when lso and Shamil Sharif exchanged a few quick passes outside the box before the latter met the Dane’s return pass and curled a shot narrowly wide from eight-yards out.

The hosts carved out an opportunity on 19 minutes when Helmi Zembin sold Sufianto the dummy on the right flank before drifting in and firing a shot at goal that was parried away by Home custodian Hyrulnizam Juma’at.

Another good build-up play by Home on the counter three minutes later nearly resulted in the opening goal when Aqhari Abdullah and Ilso combined to send Song Uiyoung through on goal, but the Korean could only shoot straight at Wasps custodian Wardun Yussof.

The Wasps then broke the deadlock on 27 minutes after Home failed to clear their lines when Adi Said’s ferocious drive clattered off the crossbar. The ball dropped to Awangku Fakharrazi, who laid it off for Ramazotti to clinically drill a shot into the bottom corner from close-range.

The Protectors could have found an immediate response two minutes later when Shamil ran onto Aqhari’s through ball, but the former fired high and wide of the mark.

Home wasted a glorious chance to pull level after the break when Juma’at sent in a low cross for Sufianto on 58 minutes, but the latter stabbed the ball wide despite just being inches away from the goal.

The visitors continued to probe and nearly found the equaliser on 73 minutes when Aqhari found Shamil with a lofted pass into the 18-yard box, but Wardun pulled off a brilliant save to deny the latter at close range before Najib Tarif cleared the ball off the line.

By now, DPMM were defending so well and preventing Home from making incisive runs and passes into the box, that Ilso had to drop to the flanks to create space for himself and send in crosses for his teammates which were dealt with easily by the Wasps.

DPMM could have doubled their lead in stoppage time when Adi sent in a tempting cross for Shahrazen Said, who met the ball first time with a powerful header, but Hyrulnizam made a good save.

Brunei DPMM coach Steve Kean: “We were hard to break down tonight and when you have Ken Ilso going out the flanks to get the ball because there were no space, you are doing things right.

“We are normally very offensive, but after the 5-0 loss to Home, we had to change from five to three at the back as well as our approach to games.

“Credit to the players who worked hard on the training ground to carry out the game plan.”

Home United coach Philippe Aw: “We created so many chances and were just waiting for one to fall. If you don’t score, you don’t win games.

“We didn’t played well in the first-half because we played a lot of long balls and we changed that in the second-half and we created problems for them.”

Brunei DPMM: Wardun Yussof (GK), Awangku Fakharrazi (Shahrazen Said 73′), Brian McLean, Helmi Zembin, Yura Indera Putra, Najib Tarif, Maududi Helmi, Rosmin Kamis (C), Hendra Azam (Azim Izamuddin 86′), Adi Said, Rafael Ramazotti

Home United: Hyrulnizam Juma’at (GK), Juma’at Jantan (C), Sirina Camara, Sufianto Salleh (Mahathir Azeman 58′), Lionel Tan, Shamil Sharif (Amir Zalani 89′), Song Uiyoung, Haziq Azman, Aqhari Abdullah, Syahiran Miswan (Yeo Hai Ngee 85′), Ken Ilso