15 May 2016

DPMM FC grind out win over Hougang

Sunday, May 15, 2016

DPMM FC snapped their three-game winless streak in the Singapore League (S-League) with a thrilling 3-2 victory over Hougang United FC last night.
Paulo Sergio and Azwan Ali Rahman had given the reigning champions a two-goal cushion at halftime at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
Stipe Plazibat and Jozef Kaplan answered back for the Cheetahs in a span of five minutes after the break before substitute Shahrazen Said netted late on to secure the hosts their first win of the second round.
The result propels DPMM FC to third in the table with 18 points on a better goal difference from Home United FC, who have a game in hand, and Geylang International FC.
The Eagles picked up their third straight win in the other game last night after coming from behind for a 3-1 victory over 10-man Balestier Khalsa FC at the Toa Payoh Stadium in Singapore.
Hougang are now down to sixth position just a point back from the trio but also have a game in hand.
DPMM FC got off to a bright start with Sergio on target with a strike from inside the box just 35 seconds in but his attempt was saved by Hougang goalkeeper Khairulhin Khalid.
Plazibat had a chance for Hougang in the second minute at the other end but poked his effort wide from inside the six-yard box.
The hosts grabbed the lead in the ninth minute after Azwan Ali delivered a cross from the right to the far post and was headed home by Sergio.
Rafael Ramazotti got at the end of an Azwan Salleh freekick on the right in the 15th minute but his header went just wide.
Hougang skipper Kaplan drove a low shot from the edge of the box three minutes later but it ended at the wrong side of the post.
The Cheetahs were temporarily down to 10 men after Plazibat was stretchered off in the 24th minute to treat an injury.
DPMM FC took full advantage of the situation and doubled their lead the next minute.
Sergio played a neat pass to send Azwan Ali through on goal and the latter blasted it past Khairulhin to make it 2-0.
The Brunei side continued to pour forward and got another opportunity in the 34th minute.
Sergio launched a freekick from 40 yards out into the box but Brian McLean couldn’t keep his header on target.
Sergio sent a cross from the left three minutes later but Ramazotti too couldn’t put it on target. DPMM FC had a good chance to add another to the scoresheet in the 42nd minute but Azwan Salleh’s effort from inside the box went straight to the Hougang custodian.
The reigning champions had back-to-back chances in the 51st minute with Azwan Salleh striking the post and Ramazotti’s header was saved by Khairulhin.
In turn, Hougang pulled one back four minutes later after Plazibat placed his freekick from 25 yards out into the bottom corner. Substitute Iqbal Hussain should have done better two minutes later but he blasted over from 12 yards out.
Khairulhin pulled off another stop to deny Sergio in the 58th minute but at the other end Kaplan squeezed past two markers before putting the ball past Wardun for his first goal of the season to equalise for Hougang.
DPMM FC coach Steve Kean made two attacking changes by sending on both Shahrazen and Md Hendra Azam Md Idris in the 64th minute for Azwan Ali and Azwan Salleh respectively.
The game could have gone either way but it was DPMM FC who went back in front in the 82nd minute with Sergio putting a good ball into the box from the right for Shahrazen to collect and fire past Khairulhin.
The Cheetahs should have equalised three minutes later but Plazibat headed the ball over from 10 yards out.
Hougang piled on the pressure and Kaplan tried to pick out Plazibat the next minute but McLean managed to intercept the pass to clear the danger.
DPMM FC could have killed off the game in the 88th minute with Sergio crossing from the right for Ramazotti but the Brazilian somehow missed from point blank range.
Hougang had one last effort in stoppage time after good build up play but M Anumanthan fired over to the relief of the home crowd.

The Brunei Times

05 May 2016

Kean wants a clean sheet

Thursday, May 5, 2016

DPMM FC coach Steve Kean wants his players to keep a clean sheet when they face Warriors FC in the Singapore League (S-League) today – their first away fixture in two months after six consecutive games at home.
It is now 10 games into the season and the defending champions have only managed one clean sheet so far – a 0-0 draw against Hougang United FC on March 4.
DPMM FC picked up their first win of their campaign after beating record nine-time S-League champions Warriors 3-1 at home on Feb 27.
In fact, Brunei’s only professional side has won five of the last seven meetings against Warriors - three of the wins coming in similar 3-1 scorelines.
However, DPMM FC have yet to win an away game this season.
Kean is confident that his side will find the back of the net at the Choa Chu Kang Stadium in Singapore and believes they should get maximum points if they don’t concede.
“I know we will make chances. Hopefully the unit work we have done with the attacking side for the game will score,” said Kean after a training session at the Jerudong Mini Stadium on Tuesday.
“First and foremost, I would like to come back with a clean sheet. If we do that, we should have all three points,” added the Scotsman.
DPMM FC are coming off back-to-back defeats for the first time this season after slumping to a 2-1 loss at the hands of Geylang International FC at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas last Saturday – the first time the Eagles have gotten the better of the Brunei side on their home ground.
The result – their fourth loss of the season – sees them lie fifth in the nine-team table with 14 points.
Kean is unfazed by the current situation and believes they will be able to bounce back.
“We know we are a good team. Good teams go though different phases at different times of the season,” said Kean.
“I would be much more worried if we weren’t creating chances and didn’t have control of the games. We have got those two elements right. We just need to make sure around the box we are more ruthless, and we are desperate for some clean sheets.
“We have shown that we had some difficult periods already this season (and) we have put some good results together.
“The disappointing thing is that from the last game is the late goal… to get a wicked deflection near the end was disappointing.
“But if you analyse the game like we always do, we created enough chances to win three games,” added the former Blackburn Rovers manager.
DPMM FC haven’t had problems creating chances but their conversion rate has come back to haunt them in games.
Kean is set to make some changes and hopes that it will help improve their game up front at goal.
“What I’m going to do the next couple of games is to change the shape a little bit. I feel as though we need a different spark up front and maybe just change the angles of the attacking unit a little bit,” said Kean.
DPMM FC have the upper hand in the battle against Warriors, having won 10 of the 17 games played against each other.
Warriors are seventh in the table with nine points from nine games after picking up just one win in their last five games.
With first-choice goalkeeper Yazid Yasin suspended after being sent off against Tampines Rovers FC in their 4-2 loss last Saturday, back-up goalkeeper Zainol Gulam is expected to make his first-ever S-league start - as reported in FourFourTwo Singapore magazine.
DPMM FC forward Paulo Sergio currently leads the league in assists with five, and Japanese centre-back Kento Fukuda will be charged with marking the Portuguese.
In attack, Warriors have a potent striker in Jonathan Behe - the Frenchman currently second in the S-League goal scoring charts with seven goals.
The team are in a renewal process after ditching all the foreign players who helped them win the S-League title in 2014.
Marin Vidosevic, Miroslav Pejic, Kevin McCann and Tom Beattie have all been shown the door, as has Argentine striker Nicolas Velez - who left half-way through last season to play in the Indian Super League.
After scoring 29 goals in a memorable one and a half seasons with the club, 2014 S-League Young Player of the Year Velez proved that he is no flash in the pan after moving from India to Croatia - where he now plays for first division side Hajduk Split.
The loss of Fazrul Nawaz and Daniel Bennett could also come back to haunt the Warriors.
Fazrul Nawaz, who was the top-scoring Singaporean in the league last season, is now at title rivals Tampines - and influential former captain and veteran Singapore international Bennett is now plying his trade at Geylang International FC.

The Brunei Times

01 May 2016

Geylang beat DPMM FC

Sunday, May 1, 2016
DPMM FC suffered their second defeat in a row in the Singapore League (S-League) when they fell 2-1 to Geylang International FC at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas last night.
Rafael Ramazotti equalised for the club in the 65th minute with his sixth goal of the season to cancel out Shawal Anuar opener in the first-half, but Geylang captain’s Faritz Hameed found the net late in the second-half to give his club their only second win of the season.
With the defeat, DPMM FC remained fifth in the table with 14 points after 10 games, meanwhile, Geylang moved up to sixth with 12 points to their name.
The hosts were buoyed by the return of Paulo Sergio who served a one match suspension during the defeat against Albirex Niigata FC (S) last week.
The striker was lively and influential from the start as the host dominated the first 20 minutes with Brian McLean heading wide from a free-kick.
Azwan Ali Rahman was a constant threat throughout and came close to score in some occasions but Geylang goalkeeper Syazwan Buhari was having his best night denying every attempt.
Right-back Helmi Zambin connecting very well with Sergio down Geylang left flank and beautiful one-two passes by the duo ended with Maududi Helmi Kasmi being set free just at the edge of the penalty box, but Geylang captain threw his body to block Maududi’s effort.
Geylang’s first real chance came in the 19th minute when Gabriel Quak set Sahil into the penalty area but the latter fired his shot just wide.
Quak whipped in a beautiful cross meant for Branko Cubrilo but Brian McLean rose above everyone to clear the ball to safety.
A lapse of concentration in defence saw Shawal Anuar was given plenty of space to fire the ball past Wardun Yussof as Geylang stunned the host in the 29th minute.
DPMM responded almost immediately with Sergio hitting the framework with his header following a cross from Azwan Ali.
Azwan Ali was involved in a brilliant one-two passes with Rafael Ramazotti near Geylang right-hand post and the former saw his effort brilliantly tipped over by on form Syazwan.
DPMM FC were pressing hard in the second-half to find equaliser and Sergio came close to find the net when was given plenty of space to shoot from outside the penalty box in the opening minute but his attempt went wide.
Geylang were sitting deep with their organised defence led by captain Faritz Hameed, and they occasional went forward with Branko Cubrilo came very close to score but was denied by Wardun.
DPMM FC made a change in the 58th minute bringing in striker Shahrazen Said for Azwan Ali Rahman.
Najib Hj Tarif also made way for Mohd Hendra Azam Mohd Idris just a few minutes later as they look to strengthen their attack.
Sergio was brought down by Faritz inside the penalty box in the 64th minute and DPMM FC were awarded the penalty which was later converted by Ramazotti.
Faritz redeemed himself in the 86th minute when he fired from 20 metres out, defeating Wardun at the near post following a slight deflection of DPMM FC’s player.
Head coach Steve Kean was left frustrated with the manner of the defeat.
“We created like eight to nine chances in the first-half. And that has been really the pattern that we repeated tonight from last week's game against Albirex where we have most of the chances but we found ourselves behind,” said Kean during the post match conference.
“At the moment, we are not getting fast goal and that bring pressure to ourselves. When you get eight to nine chances and you don’t put it away.
“Honestly I think Geylang was quite happy with a point, they didn’t even chase for a winner, but then we conceded late goal... so we bitterly disappointed tonight.
“What we are going to do now is to get back on the training ground. We can’t have the pattern where every team we are playing at the moment. We got much more chances than the opposition but we are not picking up any points.
“The attacker now need to do some sort of repetition on finishing from all different angle and situation, and the back four need to get back to basic, defend and trying to produce clean sheet to give us the platform to get points again,” he added.
The Brunei Times

Jerudong FC edge MS PDB

Saturday, April 30, 2016
JERUDONG FC edged the Royal Brunei Police Force Sports Council (MS PDB) 3-2 in last night’s sole DST Super League match at the Tutong Sports Complex.
Yansen Effendi scored first for Jerudong in the 42nd minute and a goal from Sufri in the 68th minute made it 2-0.
Mohd Bazli scored Jerudong’s third goal four minutes later before MS PDB’s Mohamad Fazizzul pulled one back in the 72nd minute and Mohd Syarafuddin Hamdi gave Jerudong a scare with a stoppage time goal.
Meanwhile in DST Premier League action, Tabuan Muda Under-17 (national Under-17 team) fell 4-0 to Al-Idrus Junior FT at the Berakas Sports Complex.
A brace from Adie Arsham Muhd Salleh and a goal each from Abd Malik Yunus and Md Yaakub Kassim cemented Al-Idrus’ place at the summit of the 10-team table with 15 points.
The other DST Premier League match saw bottom-dwellers Panchor Murai FC earn their first win of the season in their 3-1 triumph over Besa FC at the Balapan Track and Field of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas.
The Brunei Times

24 April 2016

Singapore Cup draw

SINGAPORE - The draw for the RHB Singapore Cup 2016, one of two local cup tournaments in Singapore football, was held on Sunday morning at Connaught Drive, as part of the third Car-Free Sunday SG in the Civic District.
Last year's runners-up Home United will face Hougang United, while Geylang International FC will play Warriors FC in what are set to be the two most intriguing ties in the preliminary round. 
Defending champions Albirex Niigata, one of the four seeded S-League teams, will face the winner of the Geylang-Warriors match-up in the quarter-finals, while Balestier Khalsa will face either Home or Hougang.
The preliminary round will take place from May 22-29, while the quarter-final round is slated to take place in September.
Invited foreign teams Nagaworld FC from Cambodia and Global FC from the Philippines will face off on the other side of the draw, with the winner meeting Tampines Rovers in the last eight.
Another Filipino side, Ceres-La Salle, who beat the Stags in their AFC Cup group stage match on April 12, will play against the Garena Young Lions, with the winners facing defending S-League champions Brunei DPMM next. 
Minister for Communications and Information Dr Yaacob Ibrahim attended Sunday's event as the Guest of Honour, along with Football Association of Singapore president Zainudin Nordin. 
Both took part in the opening game of the RHB Singapore Cup Kid's Tournament, where 15 teams from the various club academies faced off in a series of matches after the draw.

MS ABDB clinch 6-1 win, continue domination

Sunday, April 24, 2016

THE Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) found top form after hammering Jerudong FC 6-1 in a rain-soaked DST Super League match at the Berakas Sports Complex last night.
The match was stopped by match referee in the 80th minute due to a thunderous storm. However, after a mutual understanding between two teams, the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) officials and match referees, the match was awarded to MS ABDB.
The win lifted the army men at the summit of the 10-team table with a maximum points of 15 out of five matches played.
The army men broke the deadlock in the fifth minute after Sld Razimie Ramlli eased his shot in after receiving a cross from Sld Abd Azizi Ali Rahman.
Jerudong FC’s Mohd Bazli Mohd Said equalised in the 33rd minute.
Sld Abd Azizi scored a hattrick - opening his goal of the night in the 44th minute before scoring his second a minute later, making it 3-1 for MS ABDB at the end of the first half. The second half saw Sld Abd Azizi scoring his last goal of the night in the 47th minute.
The army men had total control of the match and in the 59th minute, Sld Mohd Fadhli Hj Awg Salleh made it 5-1 from a counter attack.
Sgt Md Haizul Rani Metussin sealed the 6-1 win in the 67th minute after scoring from a freekick just outside Jerudong FC’s box.
MS ABDB’s manager Major (A) Razanol Hardi Abd Razak was satisfied with the win, but remains wary of this season’s title contenders.
“The win was great, but we cannot let that swell up our heads,” said Major (A) Razanol in a post-match interview.
“Any team right now can be title contenders, because we are still very early in the season.
“The biggest worry for any team right now are player injuries that can cost a team’s season, so we want to focus on that during our training sessions.
“The duo of strikers, Sld Abd Azizi and Sld Razimie - who have amazing chemistry on the pitch can make them prime targets to be marked in our upcoming matches.
“So, we want to rotate them - which we have done in our earlier matches this season in order to not over-used or exhaust them.
“After all, players’ fitness is very important,” Major (A) Razanol added.
MS ABDB have conceded for the first time this season, however Major (A) Razanol insisted that he is not worried.
“Having a clean sheet is nice, but that is not our biggest concern at the moment,” he said.
“As long as we secure three points – thats all that matters at the end of the day,” he concluded.
The DST Super League matches will continue today with newly promoted Kota Ranger face Lun Bawang at the Balapan Track and Field of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas and Tabuan Under-21 (national Under-21 football team) take on Najip I-Team at the Berakas Sports Complex. Both matches are scheduled for 4pm.

The Brunei Times

DPMM FC fall to Albirex

Saturday, April 23, 2016

DPMM FC slumped to their third defeat of the Singapore League (S-League) season after leaders Albirex Niigata (S) FC came from behind to win 2-1 last night.

The hosts took the lead through Azwan Ali Rahman before a double by league-leading scorer Atsushi Kawata helped Albirex to gain maximum points and their second win against the Brunei side this season.
DPMM FC remain fourth in the nine-team table on 14 points while the Japanese outfit are now on 20 points from nine matches after the game at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
Tampines Rovers FC are second with 17 points while Hougang United FC are a point behind.
DPMM FC coach Steve Kean was disappointed to let the game slip away despite being on top most of the way.
“This is our own doing. It wasn’t as if Albirex opened us up at all… They expected us to push in and leave a lot of space, but we didn’t and dropped off to protect the space,” said Kean in the post match interview.
“They (Albirex) kind of ran out of ideas. They never really had any penetration and never got behind us too much, and two poor goals see us coming out of the game with no points,” he added.
DPMM FC got a good chance to open the scoring in the eighth minute after Shahrazen Said – playing in the place of suspended Paulo Sergio – chested down the ball and shot on the turn, only to see it finish at the wrong side of the post.
The hosts produced the first shot on goal in the 18th minute after Rafael Ramazotti headed Shahrazen’s cross from the right but only straight to Albirex custodian and skipper Yosuke Nozawa.
They came close again the next minute after Azwan Salleh dribbled into space before shooting from 25 yards out, but he was denied by the upright.
Albirex were playing the ball through their back-five and were patient with their build up play.
DPMM FC got another opportunity in the 32nd minute with Maududi Hilmi Kasmi firing on the turn from the edge of the box only to watch it go over.
Azwan Ali was given time and space six minutes later, but he couldn’t keep his shot down.
Ramazotti was cleared to shoot from inside the box the next minute but Naofumi Tanaka came across to block his attempt.
Azwan Ali did all the work to get past three markers four minutes after the interval before pulling back for Maududi at the edge of the box, but the latter blasted over.
Shuto Inaba produced a good cross from the left to the far post two minutes later but Naofumi Tanaka couldn’t get a good touch to trouble DPMM FC goalkeeper Wardun Yussof.
Albirex pushed forward again in the 56th minute after Kento Nagasaki broke down the left before putting in a cross but no one was in the middle to connect on it.
DPMM FC broke the deadlock the next minute with Shahrazen launching a cross from the left and was headed down by Ramazotti and poked past Nozawa by Azwan Ali.
The Brunei side should have doubled the advantage in the 65th minute after Azwan Ali found Ramazotti at the edge of the box but his effort was off the mark.
Albirex pulled one in the 72nd minute after Kawata headed Nagasaki’s corner for their first shot on target as it slipped off the gloves of goalkeeper Wardun and into the net.
Kawata almost added another two minutes later but his shot from inside the box brushed the post on the way out.
Albirex were awarded a penalty in the 86th minute after Ak Yura Indera Putera Pg Yunos pulled down Kawata inside the box.
The latter stepped up and fired into the top corner for his ninth goal of the season.
DPMM FC had one final chance to get something out of the match in added time but Azwan Salleh’s free-kick from 25 yards out was caught by Nozawa.
DPMM FC will complete their six-game home stretch with a meeting against Geylang International FC next Saturday.
Meanwhile, last night’s other match saw Home United FC defeat Warriors FC 2-1 at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.

The Brunei Times