Singapore Premier League • October 2, 2014

Young Lions Fall To Late Harimau’s Goal


Written by: Shawn Lim

A momentary lapse of concentration by the Courts Young Lions was enough for Harimau Muda to snatch maximum points courtesy of a 1-0 victory at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Wednesday evening.

Shahrul Igwan’s late winner was the difference between both sides and allowed Harimau to draw closer to the Young Lions in the league table. Harimau are now two points behind the Young Lions with three games to go.

With four minutes of injury time added on, Nurshamil Abd Ghani ran down the flanks unchallenged before floating the ball into the penalty box for Shahrul.

With only Young Lions goalkeeper Syazwan Buhari to beat, the 20-year-old showed calm and composure as he slotted the ball home in the 91st minute.

The Young Lions had started the Causeway derby the brighter of the two sides, playing possession football and keeping the ball well in the first half. They were dominant throughout the match but were met with fierce resistance from the opponents backline.

They restricted their Malaysian rivals to limited chances in front of goal, which saw the Young Tigers resorting to putting in some tough tackles when they found the going tough.

Canadian Jordan Webb was guilty of missing a golden opportunity to break the deadlock for Young Lions in the 13th minute when his shot landed in the arms of Harimau Muda custodian Ilham Amirullah, despite being in an one-on-one situation with the keeper.

Harimau Muda’s best chance of the half saw their captain Ashmawi Yakin cutting in from the right flank and leaving his marker for dead. But the skipper sent his shot over the crossbar.

In the second half, there were little chances enjoyed by both sides and it was not till the 84th minute for the Young Lions to have a glorious opportunity again.

Webb nearly capitalised on a mistake by Yakin to set up Shameer Aziq in the 84th minute, but the striker could only shoot straight at Ilham despite being unmarked.

With most of Aide Iskandar’s charges involved in the recent Asian Games in South Korea, exhaustion could be seen in some of his players and with 10 minutes remaining, Aide had to withdraw his captain, Al-Qaasimy Rahman.

As frustration increased with every failure to convert their chances in front of goal, their attempts to replicate their first half performance faded away.

On the other hand, however unimpressive the Young Tigers were in the first half, they never stopped creating chances and finding a way to score. They were more dominant after the break, with numerous attempts to break the deadlock.

In the 71st minute, Irfan Zakaria sent in a free kick that eluded the entire Young Lions defence, but Faris and Syafwan collided with each other as they tried to meet the ball at the same time.

A minute later, Syazwan was called into action again when he had to palm away a stinging shot from Syafwan.

The Young Tigers were finally rewarded for their perseverance when Shahrul’s shot found the back of the net.