29 April 2012

Singapore Cup - DPMM Fc vs Home United !

  • Here's the full fixtures of Round 1 of the RHB Singapore Cup!!!!

    Brunei DPMM FC (BRUNEI) vs Home United FC
    SAFFC vs Balestier Khalsa FC
    Gombak United FC vs Harimau Muda B (MALAYSIA)
    Tanjong Pagar United vs Hougang United
    Yotha FC(LAOS) vs Albirex Niigata FC (S)
    Phnom Penh Crown FC (Cambodia) vs Tampines Rovers FC
    Loyala Meralco Sparks FC (PHILIPPINES) vs Geylang United FC
    KBZ FC (MYANMAR) vs Woodlands Wellington FC

A Friday to remember

Sunday, April 29, 2012
HBT team's skipper makes DPMM FC debut

GOOD things come to those who wait a mantra which Vjeran Simunic certainly subscribes to.

The DPMM FC head coach handed Md Najib Hj Tarif his Singapore League (S-League) debut in the 86th minute of Friday night's 3-0 win over Woodlands Wellington FC, replacing Ghanaian striker Osman Basiru with the 24-year-old captain of the national side that won the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy last month.

Also enjoying some playing time at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas were striker Adi Said and midfielder Ak Mohammad Fakharrazi Pg Hj Hassan, both of whom were featuring in their third game for Brunei's only professional football club and current S-League leaders.

Simunic has always maintained he is wary of changing a winning team the side have only lost once in 10 games. But with the hosts enjoying a comfortable 3-0 lead after an hour courtesy of a brace from Brazilian hitman Rodrigo Gral and an early goal by Adi's brother Shahrazen, he decided to make an exception on his birthday.

"I never like changing my team when they are playing well ... but with 10 minutes to go, I'm happy I could give those three young players a chance," said the Croatian, who turned 57 on Friday.

"Wardun (goalkeeper Wardun Yussof) kept a clean sheet and I'm also happy about that. But I must think about every player ... Osman (Ghanaian striker Osman Basiru), Gral who played very well.

"It's not easy to give everybody a chance, but the players understand the situation," said Simunic.

Substituted in the 81st minute for Gral, Adi who played the whole second half during their 1-0 loss to Home United in Singapore last week had the biggest impact on Friday's game, asserting himself on the right flank with some dazzling dribbles which drew some healthy applause from the partisan home crowd.

Najib and Ak Mohammad Fakharrazi though, who was put on in place of Helmi Zambin in the 90th minute, didn't have as much time to stamp their authority on the game though Najib proved his composure with a couple of calm touches and passes.

Though they had more than half an hour to strut their stuff, Woodlands' substitutes Australian forward Hussein Akil and South Korean striker Moon Soon-ho could have done more to turn the game around.

But however lively they looked on the ball, it was obvious that the two were still injured as Rams' assistant coach Clement Tan had readily admitted during Thursday's pre-match Press conference.

Moon has a bad left knee while Hussein has been out for three weeks with a hamstring injury, but that the duo were both put into the game in the 53rd minute when DPMM FC were playing with none of the verve which characterised their first-half performance is a credit to the visitors' fighting spirit.

The result might have been different had Shahrazen not netted in the fourth minute with an easy effort after a darting run into the box from the right effectively setting the tone for the rest of the tie which DPMM FC controlled.

"It definitely affected the game," agreed Tan of Shahrazen's fifth strike of the season.

"Naturally, some of the players had their heads down and we weren't very happy with the way we conceded the first goal. But overall I'm quite happy with the second half performance. We had the opportunities, but we just couldnt convert.

"We were thinking why should we risk them?" said Tan when asked why Moon and Hussein were introduced.

"We have got able replacements (but) it didnt work out the way we had expected it to, so it was unfortunate," he added. The Brunei Times

A really happy birthday

Saturday, April 28, 2012
DPMM FC coach gets his birthday present

DPMM FC gave Vjeran Simunic the perfect birthday present last night, cruising to a 3-0 win over Woodlands Wellington FC to once again move to the top of the Singapore League (S-League).

The Croatian turned 57 yesterday and his players made sure it was a day to remember, with Rodrigo Gral scoring a brace after Shahrazen Said put the hosts in the driving seat with a fourth minute goal.

Enjoying large spells of possession and play, they also now enjoy a two-point lead over Balestier Khalsa FC.

The team would celebrate the final whistle by showering Simunic with water and portions of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas joined in the fun by singing him "Happy Birthday".

Though DPMM FC surrendered their unbeaten run in this season's S-League when they lost to Home United last week, Simunic was thrilled Woodlands who remain 10th in the 13-team table didn't steal another record from him.

"I have never lost on my birthday! Never," he proudly declared.

"This present is not only for me, but also for this beautiful country. I think this is one of the most beautiful games of the season and the fans really enjoyed it," he added.

The fans had every reason to enjoy DPMM FC's 10th game of the season after all, Shahrazen's fifth goal of the campaign gave Brunei's only professional football club added confidence to ride out their seventh win.

The Woodlands defence gave Shahrazen too much space on the right flank, and cutting past his defender, the striker unleashed a left-footed shot from inside the box which caught goalkeeper Ahmadulhaq Che Omar flat-footed.

Helmi Zambin got a rare start on the right-wing, with Hj Muhd Subhi Abdilah Hj Bakir moved to right-back in place of Shahrulrizal Hj Abd Rahman.

Helmi and Ghanaian striker Osman Basiru had attempts that sailed wide of the bar inside the first 10 minutes, and DPMM FC's 'shoot on sight' policy helped pen the visitors into their own half for the rest of the period.

Shahrazen, who is now the team's top scorer, proved he can provide assist as well when he created the second goal in the 28th minute his cross from the right was met by a delicate touch from the unmarked Gral to redirect it into goal.

Lacking composure on the ball, Woodlands only toubled DPMM FC goalkeeper Wardun Yussof in the 25th minute when he rushed out to close out the angles after Shamsurin Rahman was stringed a through ball from Farizal Basri.

Osman should have grabbed his fifth goal of the season seconds after the re-start, but with only Ahmadulhaq to beat, fired wide of the left post. DPMM FC lacked the same sort of urgency they played with in the first half, but Woodlands weren't able to capitalise on their opponents' lull in concentration.

They were made to pay for it in the 63rd minute when Gral easily converted a penalty after Helmi was felled inside the box by Edward Tan, and though the hosts created more chances Shahrazen alone had three the team were not able to find the net again.

Last night's other game saw Harimau Muda (Malaysian Under-23 team) beat Hougang United FC 3-1 at the Yishun Stadium in Singapore to jump to third and keep chase with leaders DPMM FC.The Brunei Times

27 April 2012

DPMM FC 3-0 Woodlands Wellington

DPMM Fc won 3-0 against Woodlands Wellington today.

Match info : LINK

Birthday boss Simunic wants a birthday gift

Friday, April 27, 2012
VJERAN Simunic (pic) prefers to look at DPMM FC's first loss of the season as a blessing in disguise.

Second in the Singapore League (S-League), the Bruneian behemoths face Woodlands Wellington FC in their 10th match of the season tonight the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas playing host to the game.

A win will see the hosts displace Balestier Khalsa FC who are one point above them on 21 and have played one more game than the Bruneians but DPMM FC's head coach still had his mind on last week's 1-0 defeat to Home United.

"We needed to lose a game. You learn more after losing one game than winning 10," he pondered. "Every coach needs to know how his players (react) after a loss, especially those that have never played in the S-League before.

"Now it's very important that we win tomorrow (Friday). Tomorrow is my birthday so we must win I don't like to be sad on my birthday," he grinned during yesterday's pre-match Press conference in Berakas.

Though DPMM FC look to be the favourites on paper the Rams are 10th in the 13-team league Simunic, who turns 57 today, disagrees.

Certainly, with two wins and two losses in their previous four encounters, tonight's game is anyone's guess especially with the tightest of scorelines separating the two sides each time they have met.

Their first meeting was four years ago in 2008, when the Bruneians fell 1-0 to Woodlands in the first round of the 2008 Singapore Cup.

DPMM FC came out on top the second time they faced each other, beating the Singaporeans 2-1 at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in March 2009.

The Woodlands Stadium played host to the return fixture three months later, where the hosts prevailed 2-1 this time around.

But DPMM FC's most memorable match against Woodlands came in June 2009, when they beat the Singaporeans 2-1 to reach the Singapore League Cup which the Bruneians later won after pipping giants Singapore Armed Forces FC on penalties.

"Woodlands are the first opponents we lost to when we first started," reminded the Croatian.

"They are a big name ... a big team. There is no easy game for DPMM FC ... All teams come here to win," said the coach.

Clement Teo readily agreed with Simunic.

"It doesn't matter how far we travel and where we play, the aim is always to win," insisted Woodlands' assistant coach.

"There might be a backlash after their first loss plus their players will want to give Simunic a birthday present.

"Playing here boosts players' morale they shouldn't be nervous," noted Tan when asked what he thought about playing at the S-League's largest venue.

Woodlands will be without right-winger Goh Swee Swee, who was shown a red card during their 2-1 loss to Harimau Muda (Malaysian Under-23 team) on April 15.

Australian forward Hussein Akil might be out due to injury while Trinidad and Tobago defender Fabien Lewis is currently in the United States.

The side's other two imports English defender and team captain Daniel Hammond and South Korean striker Moon Soon-ho are both available.

DPMM FC, though, have no injury or suspension concerns so sealing all three points should be on top of their minds tonight.The Brunei Times

24 April 2012

A win for nat'l futsal team in Bangkok, finally

Tuesday, April 24, 2012
A REJUVENATED Brunei side at last have something to smile about at the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Futsal Championship 2012. The national futsal team will leave Thailand with a win after edging Timor Leste 5-4 in their last Group B match at the Bangkok Thonburi Stadium yesterday.

With a day off on Sunday, Fachri Bangkul opened the scoring in the fourth minute for the Sultanate. But, the lead was shortlived as Manuel Pereira equalised for Timor Leste in the sixth minute. Brunei hit back immediately Mohd Faiz Hasnan answering with a goal in the seventh minute. But Pereira picked up his second of the night the following minute to make it 2-2.

Safwan Safri restored Brunei's lead in the 10th minute and Faizul Azmi scored two in two minutes (in the 16th and 17th minutes) to give the Sultanate a comfortable 5-2 cushion.

Brunei suffered a late scare as Pereira picked up his hat-trick in the 23rd minute and scored his fourth in the 26th.

The result puts Brunei third in the group behind leaders Thailand and Indonesia.

The Sultanate started their campaign with an 8-6 defeat to Laos on Thursday. Then came the stunning 22-0 loss to hosts Thailand on Friday and a 9-2 defeat to reigning champions Indonesia on Saturday.

The Brunei Times

19 April 2012

AFF Futsal - Laos 8-6 Brunei

In the meantime, Laos hung on to secure their first three points in Group B when they edged Brunei 8-6 in the other tie.

The Laotian began the game on the right note when Kita Souksabai opened the scoring in the very first minute of play. They then raced to a 3-0 lead inside of the first ten minutes of the game with goals off Nidnilanh Chanchaleune (8th minute) and Khounsombath Phommaxay (9th).

But Brunei fought back with their first goal of the game through Maziri Maidin in the 12th minute to put the pressure on Laos. The score at the end of the first half was 3-1 to the advantage of Laos.

However, all that disappeared just two minutes into the restart when Anaqi Sufi Baki slammed two goals in a two-minute blitz (21st and 22nd minute) to put the score at 3-3.

The game grew more intense soon after when Junaidi Jumat gave Brunei the lead for the first time in the match on 28 minute where barely a minute later, Laos converted a penalty off Tona Bounmalay to put both teams back on level terms.

Laos then upped the tempo to score four more goals through Kita Souksabai (31st and 37th minute) and Tona Bounmalay (33 and 35th minute) as Brunei’s late surge off Norazizam Roslan (34th minute) and Maziri Maidin (39th minute) came a tad too late.


Home United beat DPMM FC

Home United won 1-0 against DPMM FC today

Jerudong FC stay perfect

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

JERUDONG FC kept their perfect record intact after defeating Kota Ranger FC 4-0 in the DST National Football League at the Balapan Track and Field Sports Complex in Berakas last night.

The win sees Jerudong FC leapfrog QAF FC to move to the top of Group B.

Both teams are level on points but Jerudong FC are ahead on goal difference.

Md Radzi Tamat, Md Enddy Soehardy Awg Sapar, Md Bazli Md Said and Md Esmendy Brahim all got their name on the scoresheet in the win.

Md Radzi gave Jerudong FC the perfect start by finding the back of the net via a stunning free-kick in the 8th minute.

Captain Md Enddy Soehardy added the second in the 37th minute after beating two defenders to a long ball before placing it out of Kota Ranger goalkeeper Hj Maswadi Hj Ismail's reach into the bottom right corner of the goal.

Striker Md Bazli was a constant threat terrorising Kota Ranger with his pace and power. He finally found the net in the 41st minute, helping Jerudong FC end the first half with a comfortable 3-0 lead.

Jerudong FC continued to control the game in the second half.

Md Esmendy would score the final goal of the night in the 52nd minute via another spectacular free-kick.

"Alhamdulillah we got the three points again tonight (Tuesday night). My players displayed very good teamwork and commitment, we have been training very hard and it showed tonight," said Jerudong FC manager Hj Jalaluddin Hj Ghazali.

Jerudong FC will be looking to continue their winning ways when they face (Brunei Shell Recreation Club) BSRC this Sunday.

"We will be playing against BSRC next ... if we win the game this Sunday, we will have a good chance at qualifying for the next round," he said.The Brunei Times

Calling all U-21 footballers

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

THE Department of Youth and Sports is holding trials today to select players for the national Under-21 football team competing at the 15th Malaysia Games (SUKMA) in Pahang, Malaysia.

The trials will kick-off at 8pm at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas and players from all over the country are encouraged to participate.

National football coach Kwon Oh-son (pic), who helped the nation clinch its first Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) title this year, will head a team of coaches from the Department of Youth and Sports at tonight's trials.

The trials are open to anyone born in 1991 or later. Those interested are required to bring along their identity card.

It is understood that the Under-21 players that represented the Sultanate in the HBT will be trying out for the selection as well.

"Basically we need good strikers and we are also looking for potential newcomers in the team. SUKMA will start soon and we need to do this as soon as possible," Brunei's HBT team manager Hj Faisal Hj Eusoff told The Brunei Times yesterday.

"We need to identify potential new players and we still need to trim the team to start training," he said.

Further trials in the other three districts will also be held.

"The (Brunei-Muara) trials will be held from April 18 to 29. We will be going to Tutong on Friday (April 20). For the Belait District, it will be on Sunday (April 22) and for Temburong, it will be on April 27.

"All trials for the three districts will start at 4pm and the final stage of the trials will be held at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium on April 29," he added.

Brunei is the only non-Malaysian contingent competing at this year's edition of the Games to be held from July 7-16 and this will be the first time the country is vying for the football crown.The Brunei Times

Morale booster for Nat'l Futsal team

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

BRUNEI National Futsal Team received a welcome boost ahead of the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Futsal Championship 2012, which will be held from April 19 to 27.

Three companies — Sahid Sdn Bhd, Sullivas Sdn Bhd and Arin's Enterprise — announced that they will be supplying team sport shirts, training jerseys and matches' jerseys for national futsal side at the sponsorship presentation ceremony at National Football Association Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) House in Berakas yesterday.

Present as the guest of honour to receive the supplies (jerseys) was the General Secretary of NFABD Mohd Noor Hj Abdullah.

Also present at the ceremony were Hj Mohd Taha Hj Mohd Tahir, the Manager of the DST National League, Hj Hamidon Hj Md Zain, the chairman of the refereeing committee at NFABD, Pg Adnan Pg Seri Indera Pg Hj Ismail, the chairman of Sahid Sdn Bhd, Raymond Hong Fan Tze, the managing director of Sullivas Sdn Bhd and Awg Hazrin Majid of Arin's Enterprise.

"I would like to thank the sponsors for their support in sponsoring the national futsal squad that will be competing in the AFF Futsal Championship in Bangkok. The players and the manager couldn't make it here today as they are now in a training session at the indoor stadium, and they will be leaving for Bangkok tomorrow morning. I hope that our national futsal team will be able to give a good fight at the tournament," said Hj Mohd Taha, speaking at the Sponsorship Presentation ceremony.

Brunei Darussalam will be playing in Group B alongside seven times champion Thailand, one time winner Indonesia, Laos and Timor Leste. Playing in Group A are Vietnam, Malaysia, Cambodia, Philippines and Myanmar.

It will be a difficult task for the country as the team will begin their campaign this Thursday playing against Laos at the Krungthep Thonburi Indoor Stadium, Bangkok, before taking on powerhouse Thailand the next day at the same venue.

Brunei will next play against Indonesia on Saturday (April 21) before completing the group stage match against Timor Leste on Monday (April 23) at the Kiraves Indoor Stadium, Bangkok. The Brunei Times

10 April 2012

QAF FC in seventh heaven

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Sunday, April 8, 2012

QAF FC put on a dominating display to record a 7-0 win over hapless Seri Bolkiah 1 at the Balapan, Track and Field in Berakas last night.

Adie Arsham Md Salleh bagged four-goals to send his team to the top of Group B of the DST National Football League 2012 with 12 points, three points above Jerudong FC.

Muhd Hafis Mahari scored a brace and Mushready Chuchu also added a goal to his name in the victory.

Both teams struggled to find their rhythm early on in the game.

It would take Mushready 29 minutes to break the deadlock, scoring the first goal of the night when he produced an impressive solo run by dribbling through two defenders before slotting the ball past the goalkeeper.

Seri Bolkiah 1's true chance of the night came in the 31st minute when Asriman Hasnol Saiman dribbled past two defenders and blasted the ball just a few inches over the bar.

Adie Arsham found the net in the 40th minute as he headed home Muhd Hafis' cross to increase QAF FC's lead to 2-0, going into the second half.

QAF FC started the second half firing, Muhd Hafis unleashing a strike just outside the box to beat Seri Bolkiah 1 goalkeeper Ak Mohd Khiya'arul Adry Pg Mohd Yussof in the 49th minute.

Adie Arsham and Muhd Hafiz added their second in the 64th and 67th minute respectively to increase QAF FC's lead to 5-0.

Mushready turned provider in the 86th minute when his cross was easily tapped into the back of the net by Adie Arsham.

Ex-national striker Riwandi Wahit unselfishly passed the ball to Adie Arsham for a tap-in in the 91st minute to complete the rout.

"Some of our key players are injured, there are four to five players who are injured going into this game. Hadiman was one of them he is our key player in this season," said QAF FC President Hj Masri Hj Hamzah.

"We still need to improve, especially in defence, the fitness level is not there yet, but I am happy with the result tonight, another three points for us. This is our fourth win and we hope to continue the good form throughout the season," he added.The Brunei Times

An Easter gift for Simunic

Jason Thomas

Sunday, April 8, 2012

DPMM FC'S slim 1-0 win over Young Lions on Friday night was extra special for Vjeran Simunic (pic).

The team's head coach was resigned to a goalless draw against the Singapore League's (S-League) bottom side until Azwan Salleh's stunning free-kick deep into injury time handed the hosts all three points to cement their status at the top of the league.

"I told my players to give me a present because I'm alone for Easter my family is in Croatia so now I'm very happy," he smiled.

"I knew their goalkeeper (Shazwan Bukhari) is small so we trained for free-kicks ... I told Azwan to shoot on target if he had a chance and it was a very good free-kick.

"I think we showed that we deserved to win and the boys deserve to be on top.

"Now we're a little tired mentally because we did not expect to be fighting for the top spot at the start of the season.

"Before we were the hunters now we're the hunted!

"It's easier to go to the top than to stay at the top. Now the whole league wants to push us down and they expect us to lose. But destiny is in our hands," he added after Friday night's victory at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.

The Croatian refused to blame his players for failing to break down their opponents earlier, instead insisting that the Young Lions the Singaporean national Under-23 team were punching well above their weight.

After a lacklustre first half, Simunic told his players to close the Young Lions down better in the second period and imagine that "they were playing against a top team like Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC or Tampines Rovers FC".

To the casual observer, the tie hardly looked like one between the league leaders and the basement dwellers though Simunic had always maintained that the Young Lions were capable of pulling off an upset.

And, indeed, DPMM FC fans will remember how their side needed another last minute goal against the Young Lions, this time by striker Abu Bakar Mahari, to salvage a 1-1 draw in their debut S-League match in 2009.

"We've been unbeaten here for a long time, but I knew that one day we would lose ... Maybe tonight, maybe the next night," said Simunic.

"The Young Lions are a good team and now I think my players trust me when I warned them it would be a tough game.

"I was worried about wingers Sherif El-Masri, Benjamin Kristoffersen Lee and striker Jonathan Toto. They are very good players and they will have a good career with the Young Lions especially El-Masri, who is in the Canadian Olympic team," he added.

Though he refused to blame Shazwan for the goal, Young Lions handler Robin Chitrakar felt his team should have gone away with a share of the points.

But despite being rooted to the bottom of the table, the former Singapore international believes that his players have a promising future ahead of them.

Starting with four Under-21 players and ending with two 17-year-olds midfielder Anumanthan Kumar and defender Tajeli Salamat Chitrakar has every reason to be optimistic.

"It's painful for us ... Definitely disappointing," he said.

"The boys performed well and were organised, but they didn't take their chances. Coming here is not easy, but we played better than I expected.

"We lose like this (set-pieces) everytime, but I don't think it's because we're not mentally strong. The boys have prepared well and we're the youngest team in the league so we definitely need time.

"The referee didn't give the foul which led to the free-kick, it was the linesman who called it. But those things happen in football, you never know (what can happen) until the final whistle," he added.

DPMM FC's next game is against Tanjong Pagar United FC at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium on Sunday.

Meanwhile, at the Bedok Stadium in Singapore last night, Tampines moved up to third in the league after an Aleksandar Duric hat-trick inspired them to a 5-1 win over Geylang United FC to put them tied on points with Harimau Muda (Malaysian Under-23 team) with 14 points, but on top because of better goal difference.

Tonight's match will see Gombak United FC host Hougang United FC at the Jurong West Stadium in Singapore.The Brunei Times

Azwan, the Lions tamer

Jason Thomas

Saturday, April 7, 2012

AZWAN Salleh's magical injury-time free-kick sealed a dramatic 1-0 win for DPMM FC over the Young Lions last night, the team's fifth win of the Singapore League (S-League) season consolidating their position at the top of the table.

Basement dwellers with only a point to their name, Singapore's national Under-23 team looked destined for a deserved draw at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas after frustrating the league leaders with their determined defending.

But the linesman spotted a foul on substitute Helmi Zambin in the dying seconds and up stepped Azwan, whose strike means DPMM FC now enjoy a two-point lead over Balestier Khalsa, who beat Albirex Niigata FC (S) 2-1 last night.

The entire Young Lions team returned inside the box for the set-piece, but it was all for nothing as Azwan's 30-yard free-kick gloriously sailed over the crowd and past goalkeeper Shazwan Bukhari's right, with the stadium instantly erupting to celebrate Azwan's first goal of the season.

DPMM FC head coach Vjeran Simunic likened Azwan to Brazilian defender Roberto Carlos after the match, and though the midfielder didn't mention anything about the left-legged legend's powerful shots, he admitted he did enjoy a bit of the limelight.

"It was the last minute so I wanted to be the hero," grinned the 24-year-old Bruneian, whose teammates hoisted him onto their shoulders after the final whistle.

"I didn't save the game the whole team did," said Azwan, adding that he meant for it to be a cross into the box.

Saving the game was on top of every fan's minds last night as the goalless stalemate which would have been the first time the team failed to find the net all season was bound to feel more like a defeat than a draw.

The team were thwarted time and again by an organised Young Lions back-line, but their biggest problem especially in the first half was creating chances.

DPMM FC just couldn't get their passing game going and a dull and dreary opener saw chances few and far between.

The Young Lions attacking trio of left-winger Sherif El-Masri, right-winger Benjamin Kristoffersen Lee and striker Jonathan Toto proved to be a threat throughout the tie, with El-Masri in particular a menace with his dazzling dribbling.

DPMM FC's Ghanaian striker Osman Basiru looked lively in the opening minutes, but he would suffer from a lack of service, with the half's best chance falling to right-winger Hj Muhd Subhi Abdilah Hj Bakir, whose header from an Azwan cross was off the mark.

Lee headed straight at goalkeeper Wardun Yussof and El-Masri wasted a free-kick to end the half.

DPMM FC right-back Shahrulrizal Hj Abd Rahman had two headers which missed their mark in the second half and Basiru watched his header bounce back into play after hitting the bar.

Faris Ramli should have given the visitors the lead in the 72nd minute, but didn't connect on an El-Masri cross, a miss which would come back to haunt them with Azwan's howler.The Brunei Times

M-League is good for Brunei: HRH

Jason Thomas

Saturday, April 7, 2012

HIS Royal Highness Prince Hj Sufri Bolkiah yesterday outlined the importance of keeping the national Under-21 team together, stressing that the side can only grow from the experience.

The Honorary President of the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD), the Prince told The Brunei Times that the association is eyeing a slot in the Malaysia League with the view of strengthening the squad and maintaining the momentum that came from their Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) win last month.

And with talk rife as to whether Brunei will send a team to participate in one of the two Malaysia League (M-League) divisions the top-tier Malaysian Super League (MSL) or Malaysian Premier League even before the 2-0 win over Indonesia in the March 9 final, the Honorary President agreed that playing in the M-League had its benefits.

"If we want to improve ... We have to. The more they play overseas the better they will be," HRH said when asked if there was any possibility of the team playing in the M-League.

"NFABD is looking into it ... We are still in the planning stages," added the Honorary President, who also heads the Brunei Darussalam National Olympic Council.

It should be no surprise if the move works out.

After all, Brunei's only professional football club DPMM FC, who are currently leading the Singapore League (S-League), were in the MSL until 2008.

Brunei has a rich tradition of participating in Malaysian football, an involvement which reached its climax in 1999 when the national team edged Sarawak 2-1 for the Malaysia Cup.

Brunei saw action in the M-League (then known as the Semi-Pro League) from 1989 to 1993 and will be keen to further its involvement in regional football considering that cross-straits football between Malaysia and Singapore is at an all-time high Harimau Muda (Malaysian Under-23 team) are currently third in the S-League while Singapore Lions XII (Under-28) top the 14-team MSL.

Malaysia has also mooted the idea of Brunei competing in the M-League, with its Minister of Youth and Sports, Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek, telling Malaysian news agency Bernama in January that the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) and the NFABD could create a mechanism towards Brunei's participation.

Though an NFABD official later said that the FAM had yet to approach the association, he added that "anything is possible".

His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam bestowed Decoration Orders on the victorious HBT squad in a ceremony at the Istana Nurul Iman on Thursday, and in his titah, expressed the desire to see the players form the nucleus of the national football team under the supervision of the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports (MCYS).

"For me, personally, it's a good move," agreed the Prince.

"The NFABD will support it and work together with the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports to further develop football in the future," he added during the interview.The Brunei Times

06 April 2012

DPMM FC wary of wounded Lions

Jason Thomas

Friday, April 6, 2012

DPMM FC believe the Young Lions still have a lot of roar in them despite being tied to the foot of the Singapore League (S-League).

Table-toppers DPMM FC face the Singaporean national Under-23 side at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas tonight in what DPMM FC head coach Vjeran Simunic has billed as a battle between two nations.

Brunei's only professional football club have not suffered a home loss stretching back to August, 2009, but Simunic is aware of the threat that the wounded Young Lions can pose.

And with Singapore head coach and Simunic's close friend Raddy Avramovic overseeing the team's last three games, and in town for tonight's tie, the Croatian knows the Young Lions mean business.

"For me, Singapore are one of the best teams in the region," insisted Simunic during yesterday's pre-match Press conference.

"The Young Lions are a good team and with Canadian Sherif El-Masri a former Home United player in the side, they are even better.

"We want to continue our good performances and ... I think we can pick up a good result.

"Eight teams can be champions now. And the Young Lions have played two games less, so I know the battle for the Top 5 spots will be very tight," he added.

The Young Lions are on two games less because after their opening two matches, most of the squad came to Brunei for last month's Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT).

Young Lions head coach Robin Chitrakar, who was also in charge during the HBT, didn't feel his team deserved to be stuck to the bottom of the 13-team table and was adamant his team will be fighting for all three points tonight.

"We're a young team but we're no pushovers," he declared. "It's possible to beat them but it will be very tough ... They have a good coach, a well organised team and some very talented players. It's going to be an uphill task."

DPMM FC have a full squad to choose from though the Young Lions will be without injured striker Navin Nigel Vanu and midfielder Iqbal Hamid Hussain.

Meanwhile, Moon Soon Ho's brace for Woodlands Wellington FC held Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC to a 2-2 draw last night. Mislav Karoglan and Ruzaini Zainal netted for SAF FC, who remain in eighth while Woodlands maintain ninth tied on points with the army men but trailing on goal difference.The Brunei Times

VFA President Cup gets DST boost

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Friday, April 6, 2012

THE Veteran Football Association (VFA) received support ahead of the National Veteran Football President Cup 2012 following a sponsorship by the DST Group yesterday.

A mock cheque worth $15,000 was handed over by Hj Marsad Hj Ismail, the Group Development Officer, to VFA Vice President Hj Ahmad Hj Mohin at the Conference Room of the DST Group Headquarters in Tungku Link.

Organised for the third year in a row by the Veteran Football Association (VFA), 17 teams will be competing in the tournament starting today. The tournament is slated to conclude on June 10.

The teams that will be participating in the tournament are Jerudong FC, MIISA United FC, Pondok 12, Rimba Star FC, Semaun FC, TelBru FT, Old Star FC, Mighty FC, Menegah FC, I-Team, Al-Idrus, BSRCRecon, PBDB, Muara Vella FC, Najip FC, PSJD and Temburong.

MIISA United FC will play TelBru FT at the Pehin Dato Seri Maharaja Secondary School in Mentiri today and Al-Idrus will face I-Team at the Tutong District Sports Complex.

Menegah FC will play Najip FC at the Selangan Primary School Sports Complex in Temburong.

All matches are scheduled to kick-off at 4pm.

Five teams namely Jerudong FC, MIISA United FC, Rimba Star FC, Muara Vella FC and Najip FC also have teams competing in the DST National Football League this year.

Persatuan Sang Jati Dusun (PSJD), champions of the DST National Veteran Football President Cup's first season, will be looking to dominate this year's edition of the competition in the absence of last year's champion Kota Rangers FC.

According to the press release yesterday by DST, the objective of the tournament is to enhance awareness and adopt a healthy lifestyle among the citizens and residents of Brunei.

"On behalf of the Veteran Football Association, we express our sincere appreciation to the sponsor for their continuous support for the tournament," said VFA Vice President Hj Ahmad.

"There is no doubt that the role of the sponsor is very important in our effort to carry out any of our activities, we hope to have a strong bond that will continue in years to come."The Brunei Times

05 April 2012

DPMM FC get fresh legs

Jason Thomas

Thursday, April 5, 2012

DPMM FC'S newest batch of players know they face an uphill task to break into the first team.

Five players who shone during Brunei's Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) campaign officially signed for the Sultanate's only professional club yesterday, a fitting reward for their campaign which ended with a 2-0 win over Indonesia in the final.

There was talk striker Adi Said would join DPMM FC after winning the best player award at the HBT and the 21-year-old was relieved he could put an end to the rumours and team up with his brother Shahrazen.

"I'm really happy to finally be a DPMM FC player," said the former Majra FC player.

"I can improve my game playing here. It's going to be hard to adjust and get some playing time ... But I'm sure I can do it if I try my best.

"I've trained with the team for three times so far and I've enjoyed it," he added.

Md Hendra Azam Md Idris was a DPMM FC player even before the HBT started but he was under no illusion that he would be guaranteed any playing time.

"It'll take some time to break into the first team though .. Maybe two years," said the 23-year-old midfielder.

"But if I have the chance I'll definitely take it.

"I'm happy because now I can further my football career and I hope the fans will give us the same support they gave us during the HBT," said Md Hendra Azam, who will no doubt remember how the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas was packed to the rafters for all of Brunei's games.

The HBT team captain, Md Najib Hj Tarif, was relishing the opportunity to link up with some familiar faces.

"This is the best club in Brunei," gushed the midfielder.

"I have played with some of the players before, like Sairol Hj Sahari in NBT FC, Hj Muhd Subhi Abdilah Hj Bakir in AM Gunners FC and Hemli Zambin and Azwan Salleh during the 2006 Malaysia Games (SUKMA).

"Even before the HBT I was offered the chance to play with DPMM FC, but now I feel ready.

"Even if I don't play, I'm not going to let that affect my confidence. Instead, it'll make me work harder," added the 24-year-old policeman.

Defender Reduan Hj Petara also believed it wouldn't be easy to break into the first-11.

"I want to try and get some playing time and improve myself by playing overseas," said the 24-year-old.

"I'm new to the club so I know it will take some time though," added the former AM Gunners and Indera Sports Club player.

Goalkeeper Md Fakhrul Zulhazmi Yussof might have the easiest job when compared with the other four - he only has to fight with one player, Wardun Yussof, for a jersey.

"InsyaAllah (God willing), I can displace Wardun," he said.

"It's great to be playing for this club because we represent Brunei," he added.

DPMM FC coach Vjeran Simunic didn't want to give his new players any false hopes, and with the club leading the 13-team Singapore League (S-League) table, it's easy to see why he doesn't want to change a winning formula.

"I'm very happy with the first-11 now," said the Croatian.

"Even if I have Messi (Barcelona's Lionel Messi), where would I put him? How can I change the team? I'm an honest coach.

"But I'm very happy with the challenge they will be giving the other players.

"The team has been together for six months so for this current batch, I'd think they need one month to prepare with us.

"All the players can each play in five or six positions so it's very good for the team," he added.

DPMM FC take on basement dwellers Young Lions at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas on Friday.

The Brunei Times

DST FT move into fourth with Tunas FC win

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

DST FT defeated Tunas FC 1-0 last night to steal fourth in Group B of the DST National Football League 2012 in a lively mid-table clash.

Though they were left chasing the ball for most of the 90 minutes at the Balapan Track and Field in Berakas, DST FT would eventually break the defences of Tunas FC and now enjoy a three-point lead over them in the standings.

DST FT have collected 6 points from 4 games, leaving Tunas FC fifth in the 8-team table with 4 points.

Assistant manager Ampuan Shahmali Ampuan Hj Said was very happy with the win and highlighted the importance of teamwork in the game.

"It was a balanced game with both teams creating chances in the first half," said the assistant manager.

"Before the second half started, I gave the players a little bit of team talk and they started playing well afterwards.

"It was a long break for the players, (due to the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy) most of them are not 100 per cent fit, but I can see that they went out there to win the game and play as a team," he added.

The game started off with Tunas FC enjoying a majority of the possession in the first 10 minutes but there were no real chances created.

Neither goalkeeper was tested until the 12th when DST FT's Sadilah Samail fired wide after a great through ball from Md Sharif Hj Hamzah.

DST FT should have been infront as early as the 20th minute when midfielder Mohd Ros'adly Hj Rosli saw his long range attempt from some 40 metres hit the crossbar.

The second half started with Tunas FC trying to assert dominance on the match, but rigid defending from DST FT prevented Tunas FC from breaking their defensive line.

Md Yusuf Tuah finally broke the deadlock in the 65th minute when his shot deflected of the goalkeeper before bouncing into the net.

Caught under pressure, Tunas FC overloaded on their attack in the final ten minutes of the game, but luck was not on their side. They relinquished a golden opportunity to equalise in the dying minutes of the game when Md Azril Md Ali sent the ball flying above the goal.The Brunei Times

03 April 2012

Najip FC beat Perkasa, go second

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh
Tuesday, April 3, 2012

A GOAL each from Sahrul Hj Sabatu and Awg Huzaimi Hj Awg Tengah was enough to secure Najip FC their third win in the DST National Football League 2012, propelling them to second place, just two points behind the group leader LLRC FT

The team defeated Perkasa 2-1 in group A at the Berakas Sports Complex in Bandar Seri Begawan last night. Najip FC got off to a good start early in the game. However, Perkasa settled down after and put their opponent on the back foot for the rest of the first half with the midfield duo of Saifuny Sawal and Abd Taib Hj Jais dominating the middle of the park.

Abd Taib's freekick from the right side of the midfield found Awg Zulhirni Awg Rais at the near post but failed to find the net as his header hit the bar in the 28th minute. There were not many real chances made in the first half and the score remained 0-0 going into the second half.

Perkasa continued to dominate the game in the second half, however it was Najip FC who broke the deadlock when Sahrul easily headed in the ball into the net when goalkeeper Muhd Zairulhafiy Hj Mat Zaini spilled the ball following a teasing cross by Awg Haji Hj Awg Tengah in the 50th minute.

It only took three minutes, when winger Md Hilmi Wasli blasted the ball past the goalkeeper from outside the box to level the score to 1-1.

Awg Huzaimi restored Najip's lead in the 77th minute when his great first touch turned the Perkasa defenders inside out and the wrong way before firing a shot to beat the goalkeeper.

Najip FC manager Mohd Najip Moktal was happy to see his team grabbing another three points in the game, despite not dominating the game.

"It is a good win for us, another three points tonight, (but) I am not satisfied with my players performance in the first half, so I made tactical changes in the second half by playing a counter attack and made a few substitutions, it changed the game afterwards," he said.

"Three wins and one draw and we are yet to lose a game this season, but in the next game we are going to play against the LLRC FT, in my opinion they are the strongest team in the group, I would be happy if we could at least get a point from this game,"he said. The Brunei Times

01 April 2012

DPMM FC tame Bulls

Yee Chun Leong

Saturday, March 31, 2012

-Shahrazen, Basiru send DPMM FC back to summit

DPMM FC kept their unbeaten Singapore League (S-League) record intact last night when they beat Gombak United 3-0 to move back to the summit.

Last night's victory at the Bulls' Jurong West Stadium in Singapore puts DPMM FC on 14 points from six matches.

Gombak started out the better team and dominated the first 20 minutes of the game. DPMM FC were struggling to rein in the Bulls, but soon found their rhythm to hit back.

The Bruneians started to create chances and eventually took the lead after playing more organised football at both ends of the field. Brunei's only professional football team took the lead through an own goal by Walid Lounis, who headed the ball into his own net from a DPMM FC cross.

Striker Shahrazen Said then doubled DPMM FC's lead in the 37th minute after connecting on a cross by Brazilian import Rodrigo Gral.

Osman Basiru also got on the scoresheet after a good solo effort in the 50th minute.

The Ghanaian hitman dribbled into the box from the right and unleashed a powerful shot to beat Zaiful Nizam in between the Gombak sticks for a 3-0 advantage.

His fourth goal of the campaign, Basiru is his team's topscorer.

The win was even sweeter as both head coach Vjeran Simunic and goalkeeper coach Hj Zainol Ariffin Hj Jumat were serving one-match touchline bans imposed by the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) having been sent to the stands in the previous match against Malaysia's Harimau Muda.

Ilham Jais, the DPMM FC assistant coach, took over the duties of handling the team and was proud of the boys' performance.

"Everyone on the team did their job. The players gave it more than 100 per cent out there in the game. I have to credit them for the win," said Ilham during an interview with The Brunei Times after the win.

"Overall, we are very happy with all three points and it is a bonus that we kept a clean sheet in the victory," he added.

"Everything went really well for us and I thought we played fantastic football at both the offensive and defensive ends," continued Ilham.

DPMM FC made two substitutions in last night's game with midfielder Sairol Sahari replaced by Mohammad Helmi Zambin in the 69th minute while Awangku Fakhrazzi taking over the duties from Shahrazen in the 89th minute.

"I'm happy with both the changes. They adapted to the game quickly and even managed to create a few chances," said Ilham.

"Now we are already concentrating on our next game against the Young Lions (Singapore Under-23 team)," he concluded.

The Brunei side who have won four matches and drawn two will host the Young Lions next Friday at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.

DPMM FC's unbeaten record is one they share with Harimau Muda (Malaysian Under-23 team).

Gombak are 10th in the 13-team table with six points.

The other game last night saw Hougang United FC beat Woodlands Wellington FC 3-1 at the Woodlands Stadium.

Jordan Westley Webb scored a brace for Hougang with a goal in the 28th minute followed by a penalty in the 49th minute.

Stanislav Vidakovic made it 3-0 after halftime finding the back of the net in the 56th minute.

Goh Swee Swee netted a consolation goal in the 71st minute for Woodlands.The Brunei Times