Singapore Premier League • October 27, 2015

Warriors Just Want To Finish On A High


Written By: Nigel Chin

Caretaker coach Razif Onn believes Warriors FC can end their season on a high by winning their remaining matches.

The defending champions have suffered a topsy-turvy year, with injuries and periodic loss of form costing them a chance at defending their title.

That led to the departure of coach Alex Weaver, who left on mutual consent on Saturday, with Karim Bencherifa set to replace him.

But with his paperwork still yet to come through, long-serving youth coach Razif Onn was tasked to take charge of the first team against Hougang United, which the Warriors won 2-0.

After witnessing the performance against the Cheetahs, Razif is confident that the Warriors can finish their year with five straight victories.

“After all that happened over the weekend and without proper training, and they managed to perform like that, I think it’s fantastic,” Razif said.

“If they continue to perform like that, I think they can win all the final matches. This is not overconfidence, but I believe we can win.”

Razif pointed to the team effort that gave him the belief.

“We played a team game, we were not depending only on Fazrul (Nawaz),” Razif explained.

“If you look at the way Fazrul scored his goals, it was a good effort from the entire team. The team should deserve it.”

The team also kept their first cleansheet in 14 matches, despite having Prime League goalkeeper Nur Amin Malik, who conceded five times on his S.League debut earlier this year, in goal for most part of the match.

“If we talk about team sheet, the opponent didn’t have much chances. Without these shots, I think it’s our keeper to the front players that did well defensively,” Razif stated.

On the other hand, Hougang coach Salim Moin felt a lack of mental strength from his side contributed to the defeat.

“In terms of ball possession I’m pleased with the team because they understand the game plan,” Salim said.

“Sometimes, it’s the situation where we played so well but make an uncharacteristic mistake that resulted in the goal, otherwise the game will end up in a draw.

“The players must know the important things. If I want to challenge a player in the box, I must be very sure the contact cannot be vulnerable. All this decision making they have to be very sharp.

“Other than that the plays is fine, it’s not an issue… only thing is we have to score goals. Our forwards haven’t been scoring, when you are not able to score, the team will lack in confidence.”

Still, Salim believes that Hougang will not finish bottom of the league.

“I’m still not worried about Hougang finishing in the bottom,” Salim explained.

“It’s all about the character of my players. It’s all about attitude.

“We have to be strong and take the chances well. This is where players have to make the correct decision.”