Friday, February 26, 2010

Transfer - February

Transfer - January
Transfer - December
Transfer - November
Transfer - October
Transfer - September

Obatola depart Bulls

Reigning S-League Young Player of the Year Gabriel Ojimi Obatola has departed Gombak United after he failed to get an extension to his work Employment Pass (EP) according to TNP.

(Now that the real shocker, TNP reporting local sports and it is not always bad news as I just cannot forget how badly they treated local sport - not just football as who can forget the Netball team treatment after bad results against world class teams)

Therefore, his last appearance in a Gombak shirt and the S-league will be 11 Feb game against Sengkang Punggol which unfortunately ended in a 2-1 defeat.

The Nigerian has scored 73 times in 124 appearances for the Bulls.

The Bulls has already embark a replacement for Obatola with them having signed Korean Chang Jo Yoon.

Woodlands sign another Moroccan forward

Woodlands Wellington have completed their foreign quota as they sign another Moroccan forward.

The forward, Rachid Lajane, had came on the recommendation of fellow Moroccan
Abdelhadi Laakkad and do the Rams need the firepower as they have failed to hit the back of the net since their opening match.

They have drawn their last 2 matches 0-0 and it is not the worst part for it is their inability to be an attacking threat that will concern their fans more.

They had defended well though but without goals they cannot win games.

Indeed, the Rams management has clearly pinpoint that as their main concern as they have also signed a
Colombian forward, Camilo Buitrago, for their Prime league ranks and hopefully it paid off now they have added 2 new forwards.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

ACL: SAFFC gained valuable point against Henan JianYe

SAFFC gained a valuable point against Henan JianYe when they displayed a brilliant defensive performance to hold out against the CSL second runner-up.

Shahril Jantan was once again brilliant between the post as he kept out the Chinese on more than one occasion and so were his defenders and midfielder in front of him as whenever the Chinese appear to have an opening, they will put the bodies on the line to stop the shots.

The defensive performance was so impressive had to mention in their report and international defender Hafiz Osman added to that; as he did well enough to be named by as one of their starting 11 for matchday one.

It is a good start but a long road lie ahead if SAFFC want to improve on this start.

Group G

Henan Jian Ye 0-0 SAFFC

SAFFCShahril Jantan; Hafiz Osman, Daniel Bennett, Ivan Lovric, Noh Rahman; Ahmad Latiff Khamarudin, Niklas Sandberg, Rhysh Roshan Rai (Razaleigh Khalik 90’), Taisuke Akiyoshi, Indra Sahdan Daud, Federico Martinez (Mustaqim Manzur 81’)

AFC Cup: Geylang draw 1-1 with Tai Po

Geylang failed to open their opening game - against Hong Kong Side Tai Po - with a win.

The Eagles had only deployed a single forward, Peter Tomko, upfront despite them being the home side as they had lost last season top scorer Masrezwan Masturi due to injury.

They paid for their cautious approach as they failed to break down the Hong Kong side, who was equally cautious, in the first period.

It was clearly a mistake as the Hong Kong side gain confidence as a result for it is well-known foreign sides do not fancy playing on the Jalan Besar artificial pitch.

Tai Po then took the lead in the 70th minutes but the Eagles hit back immediately through Rastislav Belicak.

Coach Mike Wong will surely have to more adventurous at 'home' for it may well be points gained at home that make the difference as last season, Home United were woeful outside of Singapore but with a perfect record at 'home', they went through to the Second Round.

He cannot claimed to be learning along with his players as there is no time and not enough games to be learning in Asia.

Geylang United 1-1 Tai Po

Scorer: Rastislav Belicak

Geylang UnitedYazid Yasin
Syed Fadhil
Jonathan Xu (Yasir Hanapi 63’)
Rastislav Belicak
Walid Lounis
Syed Thaha
Itimi Dickson
Adrian Dhanaraj
Mirsolav Latiak (C)
Fazly Hasan (Shah Hirul 74’)
Peter Tomko (Hafiz Rahim 84’)

League Cup Round 1 results

League Cup 2010
Round 1

Geylang United (6) 0-0 (5) Young Lions

Geylang United
Toh Guo' An, Walid Lounis, Rastislav Belicak, Fazly Hasan,(
Shah Hirul) Adrian Dhanara, Itimi Dickson, (Jonathan Xu) Syed Fadhil, Vasile Ghindaru, Miroslav Latiak (C), (Yasir Hanapi) Syed Thaha, Peter Tomko

Young Lions
Izwan Mahbud, (Shakir Hamzah) Eddie Affendy Chang, (Gabriel Quak) Madhu Mohana, Abdil Qaiyyim, Hafiz Abu Sujad, Luka Savic, Izzdin Shafiq, Raihan Abdul Rahman, Khairul Nizam, Fadhil Noh, (Stanely Ng) Eugene Luo

League Cup 2010
Round 1
Balestier Khalsa 0-2 Etolie FC

Scorer: Khaled Kharroubi, Karim Boudjema

Balestier Khalsa

Joey Sim, (Anantha Rajan) Sofiyan Abdul Hamid,
Paul Cunningham, Daniel Hammond (C), K Sathiaraj, Ishak Zainol, (Han Yiguang) Syaqir Sulaiman, (Goh Swee Swee) Nurhilmi Jasni, Poh Yi Feng, Vitor Borges, Rivaldo Costa

League Cup 2010
Round 1
Woodlands Wellington (4) 0-0 (3) Albirex Niigata (S)

Woodlands Wellington
Hafez Mawasi, Abdelhadi Laakkad, Winston Yap, Kazuki Yoshino, Sahairi Ramri, Anaz Hadee, Luis Eduardo Hicks, (Guntur Djafril) Azlan Alipah, Noor Ali (C), Sazali Salleh, Asraf Rashid

League Cup 2010
Round 1
Beijing Gouan (S) 1-3 Sengkang Punggol

Scorer: Zhang Ye / Mamadou Diallo (2), Farizal Basri

Sengkang Punggol
Amos Boon, (Duncan Elias) Darrel Tan, Shahir Hamzah, Lau Meng Meng, Sim Li Ming, (Faizal Amir) Ashley Ow, Jordan Webb, Jala, Mamadou Diallo, Murphy Wiredu, (Farizal Basri) Moussa Keita

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Lions crucial clash with Jordan to be LIVE

MediaCorp will be showing LIVE on channel 5 the crucial clash between Singapore and Jordan.

Both teams are looking to qualify for the Asian Cup Final to be held at Qatar next year.

The Lions are currently third - the same points as second-placed Thailand - and may only required a point if Thailand failed to gain anything in their match against Iran at Tehran.

If Thailand gained a point, then the Lions have to win and the only situation in which the result between Jordan and Singapore will not matter is if Thailand defeat Iran.

The Jordan vs Singapore is at 11 pm Singapore time.

Lions squad announced for Jordan clash

Singapore coach Radojko Avramovic has named a 22-man squad in preparation for the crunch AFC Asian Cup Qualifier against Jordan at the King Abdullah International Stadium in Amman on Wednesday 3 March.

The Lions head into the tie level on points with second-placed Thailand and will need to better the latter’s result against already-qualified Iran in Tehran to make it to the 2011 AFC Asian Cup Finals in Doha.

Both Group E matches have been scheduled by AFC to kick off simultaneously at the Jordan local time of 1800hrs. (NB. Singapore are 6 hours ahead of Jordan.)




Hassan Sunny

Tampines Rovers

Lionel Lewis

Home United

Afiq Yunos

Young Lions

Baihakki Khaizan

Persija (Indonesia)

Daniel Bennett


Precious Emeujeraye

Sriwijaya (Indonesia)

Juma'at Jantan

Home United

Noh Rahman


Rosman Sulaiman

Home United

Shaiful Esah


Hariss Harun

Young Lions

Isa Halim

Home United

Ridhuan Muhamad

Arema (Indonesia)

Shahril Ishak

Home United

Shi Jiayi

Home United

Tengku Mushadad

Home United

John Wilkinson


Aleksandar Duric

Tampines Rovers

Fazrul Nawaz

Gombak United

Indra Sahdan


Noh Alam Shah

Arema (Indonesia)

Qiu Li

Tampines Rovers

SAFFC & Tampines play to a draw

S-league Champions SAFFC played out a 1-1 draw with last season runner-up Tampines Rovers.

The Stags must have thought they won it when they received a 89 min penalty which Qiu Li converted but from a freekick, deep into injury time, Park head in the equaliser after the Stags left the Korean unmarked as they were more concerned about the height of the other Warriors like Ivan Lovric.

The night before, Woodlands played a drab 0-0 draw with Beijing Guoan (S).
SAFFC Shahril Jantan (C), (Hafiz Osman) Shaiful Esah, Niklas Sandberg, Ivan Lovric, Taisuke Akiyoshi, Ahmad Latiff, Noh Rahman, (Mustaqim Manzur) John Wilkinson, Park Tae Won, , Indra Sahdan, Daniel Bennett

Tampines Rovers
Hassan Sunny, Zahid Ahmad,
Zulkarnaen Zainal (C), Seiji Kaneko, Akihiro Nakamura, Park Yo Seb, (Jufri Taha) Shukor Zailan, (Jamil Ali) Aliff Shafaein, (Ismadi Mukhtar) Imran Sahib, Aleksandar Duric, Qiu Li

Woodlands Wellington
Hafez Mawasi, Abdelhadi Laakkad, Winston Yap, Kazuki Yoshino, Sahairi Ramri, Anaz Hadee, Luis Eduardo Hicks, (Asraf Rashid) Azlan Alipah, Noor Ali (C), Sazali Salleh, (Andy Ahmad) Guntur Djafril

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

SAFFC opponents ACL squad

GAMBA OSAKA (Japan Emperor Cup Champions and J-league runner-up)


HENAN JIANYE (Chinese Super League second runner-up)

Geylang United opponents AFC Cup squad

SHB DA NANG (V-league Champions)

NT REALTY WOFOO TAI PO (Hong Kong FA Cup Champions)

THAI PORT (Thai FA Cup Champions)

Etolie and Sengkang play to a draw

In an entertaining matchup at Jalan Besar , French side Etolie and Sengkang Punggol play to a 2-2 draw.

The Dolphins were underdog for much of the game but had twice took the lead with goals from Moussa Keita and Jordan Webb.

Etolie reply through Frederic Mendy and Matthias Verschave.

The French side biggest weakness were clear for all to see with their custodian, Yohann Lacroix, clearly, at best, an average keeper and as the saying go, a good keeper can earn a team an extra 10 to 15 points a season then Yohann Lacroix is not that man.

But onto the more important point about the match which is the LIVE telecast and the fact the production was done by MediaCorp Studio for Starhub tell one everything.

As I mention before in my Viewpoint - This is what happen to UK Sentanta and African GTV (both now bankrupt) as they thought short-term and just thought they could piggyback on what others are doing - this is now happening with Starhub.

While Starhub will not go bankrupt as they are unlikely to pay any huge sum like UK Sentanta and African GTV, Starhub is clearly a mirror of them as the production added nothing new like an interview with players and coaches or even an insight etc.

MediaCorp excuse is the 9.30 pm news so what Starhub.

It does not matter for if Wednesday LIVE telecast is like Friday, then as I wrote before it will end in tears for both Starhub and FAS for we know why local sports have not earned respect.

The reason is support is terrible and Starhub is showcasing that.


It is clearly the bare minimum and I asked FAS president Zainudin Nordin - what the point?

Sengkang Punggol

Fadhil Salim, (Mamadou Diallo) Sobrie Mazelan, Lau Meng Meng, (R Sivaneswaran) Sim Li Ming, Shahir Hamzah, Jordan Webb, (Farizal Basri) Faizal Amir, Duncan Elias, Jalal, Murphy Wiredu (C) , Moussa Keita

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Stags stay perfect

Tampines Rovers stay perfect in the S-league as they make it 2 win out of 2 games.

Ex-Korean international Park Yo Seb, former U23 international Jamil Ali and National striker Qiu Li scored for the Stags in a 3-1 win against Albirex Niigata (S) at the Jurong East Stadium.
On the same night, Geylang United won their first game of the season as they defeated Young Lions 1-0 at Jalan Besar with Slovak Peter Tomko notching the winner.

Tampines Rovers
Hassan Sunny, Zahid Ahmad,
Zulkarnaen Zainal (C), Seiji Kaneko, Akihiro Nakamura, Park Yo Seb, Shukor Zailan, (Jamil Ali) Aliff Shafaein, (Ismadi Mukhtar) Imran Sahib, Aleksandar Duric, (Jufri Taha) Qiu Li

Young Lions Jasper Chan, Afiq Yunos, (Gabriel Quak) Fazli Ayob, Seo Su Jong, Luka Savic, (Madhu Mohana) Kim Seong Kyu, Hariss Harun (C), Raihan Abdul Rahman, Abdil Qaiyyim, Khairul Nizam, (Fairoz Hasan) Fadhil Noh

Geylang United
Yazid Yasin, Walid Lounis, Rastislav Belicak,
Fazly Hasan,(
Shah Hirul) Adrian Dhanara, (Yasir Hanapi) Itimi Dickson, (Jonathan Xu) Syed Fadhil, Vasile Ghindaru, Miroslav Latiak (C), Syed Thaha, Peter Tomko

No chance for ASEAN club Championship at this stage

A new report from VNN (Vietnam News newwork) has admitted AFF is interested in reviving the ASEAN Club Championship - last played in 2005 where Tampines Rovers won - but it is near to impossible at this stage.

Other than support from VFF, there is no support from elsewhere; especially the other ASEAN Big 5 whose support is crucial as that is where the sponsors are.

The truth is ACL and AFC Cup have overshadowed the ASEAN Club Championship making them more important as it has the money (AFC just received over US$1 billion for it competition from WSG) and prestige (ACL can reached the WCC Finals) than ASEAN own club competition.

One cannot see how the ASEAN Club Championship can be revived; for even if it is revived it will be a poor cousin of the AFC Cup - which is hardly on equal standing with ACL.

Thus, the ASEAN Club Championship could be the lowest denomination in the ASEAN club arena - even behind the domestic league - and it is unlikely this is what AFF is hoping for.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Starhub participation appreciated but hope it long term

Starhub will be broadcasting Wednesday LIVE S-league games as it 'won' the rights from FAS.

FAS was reportedly negotiating with both Singtel and Starhub before that and it seem Starhub was more sincere in supporting local sports as StarHub Chief Operating Officer Tan Tong Hai claimed the S.League television rights deal is the stepping stone in the bigger scheme to promote and generate more interest in local sports to Singaporeans.

But, not to sound negative, one know the change of heart by Starhub as they had also work hard to showcase the Schools Nationals – a show about Singapore sports at schools – after they lost a football deal last year.

If they had not lost that deal, one seriously doubts they will work for that hard for both S-league and Schools Nationals deal for where were they before that.

They will be like Singtel; who has opted to stay out of the fray.

That why, one is hoping Starhub is not just staying for the next 3 years – the time frame for that deal to run out with Singtel.

For local sport to take hold, it takes a longer investment in term of finance and time than that.

Just ask why Singtel and Starhub fought so hard for that football deal last year for we must remember, back in the early 1990s, an UK PayTV network BSkyB had invested much resources into projecting that league onto a global scale.

It took nearly 10 years and over billions of dollars and they are reaping the reward now from not just the UK subscribers but also from broadcasters who do not have a team in UK.

They did not do it for national reason just as I do not expect Starhub to do it for any other reason but it needs time and resources.

Overall though, one do believed the move is positive as Pay TV can do a better job than FTA TV as they have the money and I am not saying so now because Starhub is entering the fray.

The Starhub League Cup last year is a good showcase as it was better than what MediaCorp and, the now defunct, MediaWork has done over the last decade.

Even A-league, Australia top league, has benefited from a move from FTA TV to Pay TV as their viewers agreed the broadcasting is heads above what SBS or even Channel 7 (The FTA TV) has done over the years for their now defunct NSL and the general sentiment is more positive as a result.

As a followup, the Fox network is signing a deal until 2015 and that showed it can be a win-win situation.

That why any relationship should be a good long-term one and Starhub must not think they can reap the benefit by next year or even the year after that or it could end in tears for both Starhub and FAS.

This is what happen to UK Sentanta and African GTV (both now bankrupt) as they thought short-term and just thought they could piggyback on what others are doing.

It is long-term like BPL and BSkyB or what Fox network is doing now with A-league and both Starhub and FAS can be smiling.

Starhub to broadcast Wednesday game

FAS has given the rights to broadcast LIVE Wednesday S-league games to Starhub.

The Wednesday game will be shown live and exclusive on StarHub TV’s new 24-hour free sports channel SuperSports Arena (Channel 122), which is available to existing StarHub Cable TV subscribers, while Friday’s match will also be telecast on free-to-air Mediacorp Channel 5. They will also be concurrently displayed on Football Channel.

The one-year agreement was signed by StarHub Chief Operating Officer Tan Tong Hai and Football Association of Singapore President Zainudin Nordin at the launch of the SuperSports Arena channel at Toa Payoh Swimming Complex this afternoon.

Etoile FC win opening debut

French side Etoile FC has won their opening debut against Chinese club Beijing Gounan (S).

Forward Flavien Michelini scored the winner 5 minutes from time.

League Cup 2010 dates

League Cup 2010

20 Feb (Sat): Geylang vs Young Lions @ Bedok
21 Feb (Sun): Balestier vs Etoile @ Toa Payoh
22 Feb (Mon): Woodlands vs Albirex @ Woodlands
23 Feb (Tue): Beijing vs Sengkang @ Yishun

Quarter Finals
25 Feb (Thu): Home vs Gombak @ Clementi
26 Feb (Fri): Tampines vs Woodlands/Albirex @ Tampines 'LIVE'
28 Feb (Sun): Geylang/YL vs Balestier/Etoile @ Bedok/JBS
1 Mar (Mon): SAFFC vs Beijing/Sengkang @ CCK

Semi Finals
3 'LIVE' & 4 Mar

Third Place Playoff & Final
7 Mar @ JBS

Friday, February 12, 2010

SAFFC and Sengkang open account

Both SAFFC and Sengkang Punggol have open their account for the season with their first win of the season.

The Warriors had been, up to a point, distracted by the ACLQ for the past 2 week and they were shockingly held by Geylang United last Wednesday as they rested a few regulars while the Dolphins went down to Balestier Khalsa 1-2 at Hougang.

After their opening week disappointment, both make up for lost time as they went for the jugular to record their first win.

The Warriors had surprising gone into the break 1 goal down before goals from Indra Sahdan and Park Tae Won gave them their victory.

For Sengkang Punggol, they finally saw their dominance, for the second match in a row, pay off as they also defeated the Bulls 2-1.

With the Bulls down to 10 men, the Dolphins had the dominance and chances to kill the game off but once again, it is clear their weakness will be the finding net this season as the opener came from an own goal before Canadian midfielder Jordan Webb scored his second goal of the season to put the Dolphins a distance away.

The Bulls later pull one back with Obadin Aikhena making up for his own goal but it was not enough.

Up to this point, the Dolphins had an impressive start to the season in term of their performances and they should be pleased with that as they are starting from starch once again.

For the Bulls, it is clear their main problem of last year remain and it is their small squad as even with Aikhena coming back from the Young Lions, one also has to account for the loss of their former captain Sevki.

They had always depended on a good first 11 or 12 players with little in reserves and now as Agu Casmir is injured long-term while they had to release Kingsley Njoku - due to work permit- and Emmanuel Emuejeraye - due to being overage for Prime League foreigner -, they are looking very little as they rely on a even smaller squad.

That why when the likes of Jeremy Chiang cannot even start a game because of injuries, one know Gombak is in trouble.

One can hardly blamed them as few S-league sides have rescoures to bulk up their squad so it will be a tough season for the Bulls to repeat 2008 and 2009 now.

Shahril Jantan (C), Shaiful Esah, Niklas Sandberg, Hafiz Osman, (Ivan Lovric) Taisuke Akiyoshi, (Ahmad Latiff) Rhysh Roshan Rai, Noh Rahman, John Wilkinson, Park Tae Won, Mustaqim Manzur, Indra Sahdan

Balestier Khalsa
Ahmadulhaq Che Omar, (K Vikraman) Syaqir Sulaiman, Paul Cunningham, Daniel Hammond (C), Sofiyan Abdul Hamid, K Sathiaraj, Ishak Zainol, (Anantha Rajan) Nurhilmi Jasni, Poh Yi Feng, (Syafiq Zainal) Vitor Borges, Rivaldo Costa


Sengkang Punggol
Fadhil Salim, (Mamadou Diallo) Sobrie Mazelan, (Ashley Ow) Lau Meng Meng, (Sim Li Ming) Nor Azli Yusoff (C), Shahir Hamzah, Jordan Webb, Faizal Amir, (Darrel Tan) Duncan Elias, Jalal, Murphy Wiredu, Moussa Keita

Gombak United

Zaiful Nizam, (Zulkiffli Hassim) Jaslee Hatta (C), Bah Mamadou, Obadin Aikhena, Shafuan Sutohmoh, Fazrul Nawaz, (Jeremy Chiang) Ruhaizad Ismail, Hamqaamal Shah, Goran Subara, (Fazli Jaffar) Park Kang Jin, Gabriel Obatol

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Eagles and White Swans draw

Geylang United and Albirex Niigata (S) played to a 1-1 draw at Bedok Stadium.

Satoshi Hida scored first for Albirex Niigata (S) before Syed Thaha equalised.

But one cannot it was a reflection of the game as the truth was, the Eagles were disjointed for much of the game and completely outplayed by the White Swans midfield.

It show the disappointing performance of the two new Eagles recruits who were brought in to strengthen the Eagles for the S-league and Asia.

If Romanian playmaker, Vasile Ghindaru, cannot set up play then their attack led by their Slovakian Div 2 top scorer, Peter Tomko, can only be described as equally disappointing.

He had no bite, if any, and has memories of last season Eagles flop Ricky Hariss who has little notable strength of his playing abilities.

It is still early days yet and both Vasile Ghindaru and Peter Tomko can still succeed but the clock is ticking away.
Geylang United
Yazid Yasin, Walid Lounis, Rastislav Belicak,
Jonathan Xu
,Itimi Dickson, Syed Fadhil, Vasile Ghindaru, Miroslav Latiak (C), Syed Thaha, (Yasir Hanapi) Masrezwan Masturi, Peter Tomko

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

League Cup 2010 Draw

League Cup 2010
  • SAFFC, Tampines, Gombak, Home get bye to quarter-final
Round 1
Woodlands vs Albirex
Balestier vs Etoile
Geylang vs Young Lions
Beijing vs Sengkang

Young Lions deny by Home

The Young Lions saw a death-defying act by Home United that snatch a victory away from them.

The Cubs were leading 2-1 with goals from Fazli Ayob and Luka Savic before the returning Valery Hiek equalised for Home in stoppage time.

Home United had taken the lead through
Shahril Ishak.

This result mean Tampines Rovers is the only team left with a perfect record in the S-league.

Home United
Lionel Lewis, Juma’at Jantan, Shariff Samat, Valery Hiek, Isa Halim, Sharil Ishak, Shi Jiayi, (Shahdan Sulaiman) Nelson Arriagada, (Zulfadli Zainal Abidin) Peres De Oliveira, Choi Chul Woo, (Firdaus Indros) Rosman Sulaiman

Young Lions
Jasper Chan, Afiq Yunos, (Izzdin Shafiq) Fazli Ayob, (Hafiz Abu Sujad) Seo Su Jong, Luka Savic, (Madhu Mohana) Kim Seong Kyu, Hariss Harun (C), Raihan Abdul Rahman, Abdil Qaiyyim, Khairul Nizam, Fadhil Noh

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Geylang get V-league champions

The re-drawn AFC Cup group has seem Geylang United get V-league champions SHB Da Nang.

The V-league champions have registered Argentine Gaston Merlo and their two Brazilian Rogerio Machado Pereira and Jose Emidio De Jesus De Almeida as their foreigners.

This is in spite in V-league, 1 of the Brazilian - Now known as Nguyen Rogerio - is considered local as he has Vietnamese citizenship while the other is still trying to get it at this point in time.

However, they may not have fulfilled the FIFA 5-year residence requirement thus they cannot be registered at the Asian Level as local anytime soon.

This is not great news for the V-league champions as they have another 4 foreigners on their books in the V-league who they may wish to use - Cesar Cucchi (Argentina), Diego Mendez (Argentina), Nikolas Hernandez (Argentina), Williams Christopher (USA).

The other teams in the Eagles group are Thai Port (Thailand FA Cup winner) and Tai Po (Hong Kong FA Cup winner)

Park open account for Bulls

Former Yishun Super Reds Park Kang Jin scored on his debut for Gombak United to lead the Bulls to a 2-1 victory against Balestier Khalsa.

Tigers Brazilian forward Rivaldo Costa had reply for them with Bah Mamadou getting the winner.

It effectively end the Tigers winning streak at 1 game and the Bulls open their account for the year.

Balestier Khalsa
Ahmadulhaq Che Omar,
Syaqir Sulaiman, Paul Cunningham, Daniel Hammond (C), K Sathiaraj, Ishak Zainol, (Nurhilmi Jasni) K Vikraman, Anantha Rajan, (Andrew Tan) Poh Yi Feng, (Syafiq Zainal) Kamal Nasir, Rivaldo Costa

Gombak United

Zaiful Nizam,
Jaslee Hatta (C), Bah Mamadou, Obadin Aikhena, Ridhwan Jamaludin, (Fazli Jaffar) Fazrul Nawaz, (Zulkiffli Hassim) Ruhaizad Ismail, Hamqaamal Shah, Goran Subara, (Shafuan Sutohmoh) Park Kang Jin, Gabriel Obatol

Koreans find home with Gombak and Tampines

All the Korean players with Yishun Super Reds have found a home.

It was no surprise 29-year-old former Korean international Park Yo-Seb have joined Tampines Rovers as he was reportedly just a medical away from being a Stags player.

The surprise was where Park Kang Jin went.

He is now a Gombak United player as he replaced Nigerian forward
Kingsley Njoku.

Kingsley Njoku have been with the Bulls since 07 and blossomed to be an established squad, if not first team, member.

And the reason was reported by MediaCorp TODAY, who claimed Kingsley Njoku may not have work permit renewed as he was involved in an assault on his, now separated, spouse.

Thus Park Kang Jin have benefited from it as the Bulls decided to replace Kingsley Njoku now - before the Beep Test end on March 10 which effectively closed the Singapore transfer window.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Asian Games to start a qualifiers system?

According to a report from Bangkok Post, it seem AIOC (Asian International Olympic Council) could start a qualifiers system for football for Asian Games as Thailand U23 has to go through a qualifier to reach the Asian Games in Guangzhou, China.

The Asian Games committee has always allowed teams who apply to played at the Asian Games.

This is great, if true, as I noted back in Asian Games 06, our youths need games at the Asian Games and if that was a qualifiers system, then FAS do not need to go through SNOC (Singapore National Olympic Committee) and not know if we qualified for it.

In a qualifiers system, Singapore U23 win and we are in like the Olympic.

Transparent and no need any argument as the fate is in our own hand.

Update to Head to Head - Asia

With the ACLQ over, I have updated the Update to Head to Head - Asia section for Indonesian and Thai teams.

SAFFC overall record against Indonesia team is now 2 win and 1 defeat while for the Thai, it is 1 win, 2 draw and 3 defeat.

You can see the Head to Head - Asia section for more results.

ACLQ: Warriors reach ACL group stage

SAFFC - 8 times S-league champions- have done it again as they reached the ACL group stage since the format was revamped last year.

They defeated Thai Champions Muang Thong United and once again I must stress it is because at ASEAN Level, Singapore team are just that better defensive and all great teams build from the back.

Muang Thong United puff at the Warriors defence all night long but failed to blow the house down and ultimately, SAFFC will go on to win it on PK.

SAFFC though almost blew it as Japanese midfielder Akiyoshi had seem his shot saved by the keeper as he blasted it straight at the keeper but fortunately for him, it did not matter as the Thai side had 2 players missing their kick.

SAFFC will now play against Japanese side Gamba Osaka, Korean side Suwon Bluewing and Chinese side Henan Construction.

SAFFC 0-0 Muang Thong United


14 Shahril Jantan (GK) (C)
2 Shaiful Esah
5 Niklas Sandberg
6 Ivan Lovric (11 Rhysh Roshan Rai 91')
7 Ahmad Latiff Khamarudin
8 Daniel Bennett
10 John Wilkinson
16 Noh Rahman
17 Indra Sahdan Daud
19 Mustaqim Manzur (9 Erwan Gunawan 114')
21 Taisuke Akiyoshi

AFC Cup to see redraw

AFC has announced they will redraw the teams from the ACLQ Playoff.

It was initially announced the loser of the ACQL Playoff Final will go to Geylang United group -NT Realty Wofoo Tai (HK) and Thai Port (Thai).

But as the Final is played between a Singaporean and Thai team, it will that group will have 2 teams from the same nation regardless of who win and AFC want to avoid that.

The draw will be on Monday.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Qiu Li goal win it for Tampines

Tampines Rovers striker Qiu Li scored to make it a winning start for 2-time champions Tampines Rovers.

They defeated Gombak United 1-0 at the Jurong West Stadium.

This mean they are 1 of 3 teams - Balestier Khalsa and Home United - with winning start to their season.

Gombak United
Zaiful Nizam,
Jaslee Hatta (C), Bah Mamadou, (Ridhwan Jamaludin) Jeremy Chiang, (Fazli Jaffar) Fazrul Nawaz, (Zulkiffli Hassim) Ruhaizad Ismail, Hamqaamal Shah, Goran Subara, Shafuan Sutohmoh, Kingsley Njoku, Gabriel Obatola

Tampines Rovers
Hassan Sunny, (Jamil Ali) Zahid Ahmad, Benoit Croissant, Seiji Kaneko, Akihiro Nakamura, Park Yo Seb, Shukor Zailan, (Edward Tan) Aliff Shafaein, (Ismadi Mukhtar) Imran Sahib, Aleksandar Duric, Qiu Li

Friday, February 5, 2010

Nazri Nasir - Leader and Player of his generation

Nationality: Singaporean

D.O.B: 17 Jan 1971

Club: Sembawang Rangers (1996), SAFFC (1997-2001), Tampines Rovers (2002-2007)

Position: Defender/Midfielder

S-league: 1997, 1998, 2000, 2004, 2005
Singapore Cup: 1997, 2002, 2004, 2006
FA Cup: 1997
Tiger Cup: 1998
ASEAN Club Championship: 2005
Player of the Year: 1997

The first ever Singapore captain to lift an international trophy. That is an accomplishment one cannot take away from Nazri Nasir as he looked back on his career.

Nazri Nasir talents were spotted way before the concepts of S-league were given birth as he was handpicked along with Rafi Ali as the first recipients of the Goh Chok Tong Scheme in 1991.

Under that plan, talented footballers were send to Czechoslovakia (Now Czech Republic and Slovakia) to train for 3 months with a club picked by the host FA and with all costs borne by FAS.

And, he showed he was the only one worthy of that scheme as he emerged to be player of his Generation; outshining every player that was send, even when at that time, Rafi Ali was considered the more talented one.

The short-lived scheme ended in 1993 due to cost cuttings with record losses in the Malaysia Cup but Nazir football career was just beginning.

In 1996 as S-league was given birth, then 25-year-old, Nazri Nasir opted to start out his S-league career with Sembawang Rangers but what a mistake it was to be.

The Yishun-based club clearly lacked the vision and ambition to match his own even as their chairman talked of big dreams.

He then decided to leave the club after just one season; feeling disappointed that the Stallions had finished in the bottom two for both Series.

Immediately, SAFFC came in for the midfielder and it resulted in a tussle for Nazri Nasir still had a 2-year contract with the Stallions but the lure of winning his first S-league championship medal was proving too much as he demanded a transfer.

The tussle was frontpage news as both sides were far apart in their valuation of the player and was willing to take the matter up to the Ministry of Manpower as no end was in sight.

FAS had to step in; knowing how FIFA dislike such matter being interpreted by the Government and a figure of S$30000 - still the record transfer fee at this moment in time - were settled.

Nazri, in wanting to prove money was not his main motivation, paid half of the Warriors S$30000 transfer fee to pave the way.

It soon saw him getting his due dividend as the Warriors won the domestic Treble that very year and along with that, he also wrote history once again as he became the first local to scoop the Player of the Year award.

More trophies followed in the following year with the S-league title once again won by SAFFC and he played an important part; for in the final game of the season, against Gombak United, he had clear a goal-bound goal from the line in the dying moment to ensure the crown go to SAFFC thank to a superior goal difference.

Just a mere few months later, the 1998 Tiger Cup trophy – Singapore first ever international trophy – followed and it was extra special as he has became the first ever Singapore captain to lead Singapore to international glory.

By now, 27 year of age, Nazri Nasir has accomplished much but he was still in tussle with Rafi Ali on which player should be crowned the Player of their Generation but that was no doubts as the years continue to past by, the SAFFC player was just that more hungry.

He continue to lead the Warriors to glory as he won two more trophies during his stay with the Warriors - the 1999 Singapore Cup and the 2000 S-league crown, which he lifted as the Warriors captain.

But after the 2001 season, the Warriors management decided to release the international midfielder as they seek to revamp their team after a disappointing season which saw the Warriors lost a record 7 times – more than the combined total for them for 3 years.

The then 30-year-old opted to join Tampines Rovers and it proved no different as the hunger remained for in the very first year, he lead the Stags to their first ever trophy, the Singapore Cup.

He was an inspiring captain to his teammates for he was willing to defend them even with cost to himself.

For, after the Tiger Cup exit later that year, he found himself the subject of some scathing attacks from sections of the Lions supporters as he was willing to stand up for his ex-Warriors team mate Shahril Jantan.

He did a captain job and stood in front of his younger and thus inexperienced teammate to take the bows.

Nazri retired from international football soon afterward having amassed 100 international caps with Singapore.

At this junction, fans then started to question if he had lost his football abilities but there was nothing like doubters and critics to relit the fire in Nazri Nasir; even as he started to play in defence now and not the engine room.

That was why it was no surprise, in 2004, when the critics decried the Tampines Rovers team as the ‘Daddy Army’, he managed to rally his troopers to the finish as the Double Champions to prove the Stags were a force to be reckon in the coming years.

A year later, it was even better as history beckon again for Nazri as he added the honour of being yet again the first Singaporean captain to lift an international club trophy as the Stags won the 2005 ASEAN Club Championship in Brunei; defeating Pahang 4-2 in the Final.

The S-league champions also successfully defended their S-league crown, fencing off a tough challenge from SAFFC and Home United, and Nazir has now led the Stags to the pinnacle of their power.

They can claim to have joined SAFFC and Home United as the Kingpins of Singapore football and be recognized as one of the Big 3 and their captain, Nazir, deserved his accolades.

In 2006, despite challenging SAFFC all the way to the finish line, Tampines Rovers failed to win their third S-league crown but won their third Singapore Cup defeating Chonburi 3-2 in the Final.

In 2007, the Stags failed to finished above third in the league but they further cemented their place as a force of Singapore football and looking back it all started with Nazir Nasir leadership on the field just like SAFFC own rise a decade ago in 1997.

The 36-year-old then decided to hang up with boots after the season ended.

He has had a remarkable S-league career winning five S-league, four Singapore Cup and one FA Cup medal in his 12 years in the S-league while at the international front, he lifted both the 2005 ASEAN Club Championship and 98 Tiger Cup as captain; which no other before him has done.

A Leader and the Player of his Generation – That is the hallmark of Nazir Nasir.

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