30 August 2012

Brunei's AFF squad headfor Malaysian tests

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh


Thursday, August 30, 2012

BRUNEI'S football team departed for Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia at the International Airport in Berakas yesterday as they step up their preparations for the upcoming Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup qualifier campaign in Yangon, Myanmar.

Team manager Hj Feisal Hj Eusoff said the national team will play three important friendly matches against Harimau Muda (Malaysia's Under-21 football squad), Malaysian Armed Forces (ATM FC) and Kelantan.

Kelantan is expected to offer the national team their toughest tests in all the friendlies as the Malaysian side boast a strong and experienced team that are deep into their own preparations for Sept 18's AFC Cup quarter-final clash against Iraq's Arbil SC.

With the October 5 AFF Suzuki Cup qualifier fast approaching, the friendlies will give Brunei valuable match exposure and much needed confidence of playing on the international level.

National coach Kwon Oh-son, though, knows the team formed only in July will still need to improve in terms of match fitness and organisation.

"We have only one month left before the competition and there is still a lot more work to be done. Hopefully these friendly matches will help the players be more confident and improve their organisation in both offence and defence," said Kwon.

The national team received a much needed boost to their line up on Tuesday with the inclusion of DPMM FC midfielders Mohd Hendra Azam Mohd Idris, Mohd Najib Hj Tarif and goalkeeper Md Fakhrul Zulhazmi Yussof.

"These three players will be very important for us. They have been training with the best club (DPMM FC) in the country. I hope that these players will be able to help the team and boost the confidence of the other players," said the South Korean.

The tournament will see five teams compete for two spots in the Nov 24-Dec 22 tournament proper which will be co-hosted by Malaysia and Thailand.

The Sultanate face Cambodia on Oct 9, Laos on Oct 11 and Timor Leste on Oct 13.

All matches set to be played at the Youth Training Centre in Yangon.

The Brunei Times ..

29 August 2012

DPMM FC beef up Brunei's Suzuki Cup squad

Ak Fauzi Pg Salleh


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

IT'S DPMM FC to the rescue as players from the Sultanate's only professional club will be lacing up for the national side at the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup qualifier campaign which kicks off on Oct 5 in Yangon, Myanmar.

Team manager Hj Feisal Hj Eusoff yesterday told The Brunei Times he has included DPMM FC midfielders Mohd Hendra Azam Mohd Idris, Mohd Najib Hj Tarif and goalkeeper Md Fakhrul Zulhazmi Yussof in the squad.

"These three players (Hendra, Najib and Fakhrul) will be very important for us. We feel very grateful to have the players joining us. We would like to thank His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office, for allowing these three players to represent the national team," said the manager.

"The squad are made up of players from the DST National Football League. The players came from Majra FC, Indera, MS ABDB and MS PDB and seven of them are from the HBT (Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy) squad. The coaches of the football clubs in the country and the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (NFABD) have been very helpful in assisting us in scouting the players," he added.

The players have been training at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium and Berakas Sports Complex since May but it was only in July that they were brought together for a centralised training.

"So far they are only twenty players in the squad. They started training since May, but it was an on and off training. Centralised training started in July. They train twice a day, in the morning and afternoon. But during the month of Ramadhan they only trained once a day in the evening," explained Hj Feisal.

National coach Kwon Oh-son however, was not impressed with the progress of the players.

With the event only a month away, and the team only starting their first official centralised training in July, the national coach admitted that it is going to be a difficult task.

"Their level of stamina are still low. They only trained once a day during Ramadhan and it was not enough. We only have one month left before the tournament so we need to squeeze all their physical fitness training, set-piece play and the attack and defence's organisation in that period of time," said Kwon.

"They will be playing number of friendly matches in Malaysia. We hope that these friendly games would help secure their confidence of playing at the higher level and I also hope that it will give them actual international exposure in the game. With the support from the DPMM FC players, it will help boost the confidence of the team," added the South Korean.

The national team will be leaving for Kuala Lumpur today to compete in some friendly matches to ensure their players are in peak condition before the tournament.

The Sultanate face Cambodia on Oct 9, Laos on Oct 11 and Timor Leste on Oct 13. All matches will be played at the Youth Training Centre in Yangon.

The Brunei Times ..

28 August 2012

Brunei to play friendly with Kelantan on Sept 8

Tuesday, August 28, 2012
BRUNEI will tackle Kelantan in a high-profile friendly at the Sultan Muhammad IV stadium in Kota Bharu, Kelantan, on September 8 to ensure their players are in peak condition before the AFF Suzuki Cup qualifier campaign on October 5 in Yangon, Myanmar.

"We will play Kelantan at Kota Bharu on September 8. The match will help us prepare the national team for the AFF Suzuki Cup qualifiers in October," said the manager Hj Feisal Hj Eusoff.

"The players have been training currently at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium and Berakas Sports Complex and the preparation have been running well and Insyallah the squad for the tournament will be unveiled in a few days," he added.

Malaysian website www.redsfcnews.net reported that Brunei will be Kelantan's final opponent before they face Iraq's Arbil SC in the quarter-final of the AFC Cup on September 18.

Since the lifting of the FIFA's suspension last May, Brunei have been actively involved in international football and the Suzuki Cup qualifiers will mark the first time the national team will be taking to the field since the 2010 AFC Challenge Cup qualifiers held in Sri Lanka in May 2009 where they lost all three of their group stage games.

While the country saw the only professional football club in the Sultanate, DPMM FC clinched the Singapore League Cup on August 11 and the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy in March which they won as hosts on March 9. Brunei's last participation in the region's most prestigious tournament came in 2008, when they failed to advance to the main draw after being held to one win, one draw and two losses during the qualifiers in Cambodia.

The tournament will see five teams compete for two spots in the Nov 24-Dec 22 tournament proper which will be co-hosted by Malaysia and Thailand.

The Sultanate face Cambodia on Oct 9, Laos on Oct 11 and Timor Leste on Oct 13, all matches set to be played at the Youth Training Centre in Yangon.

Defending champions Malaysia have been drawn with runners-up Indonesia and Singapore in Group B while Group A pits Thailand against Vietnam and the Philippines.

The winners of the qualifiers will play in Group A while the runners-up will compete in Group B.

The Brunei Times 

Harimau Muda too good FOOTBALL for DPMM FC

Monday, August 27, 2012
OUTCLASSED and outplayed, DPMM FC fell to their second straight Singapore League (S-League) home defeat last night when they lost 2-1 to a slick and suave Harimau Muda side.

The game marked DPMM FC's first match since they captured the Singapore League Cup for the second time on Aug 11 but it was the Malaysian national Under-23s who were riding a wave of confidence, dominating their hosts with their captivating one-touch passing and intelligent off-the-ball movement.

Though the game was dubbed DPMM FC's "Hari Raya Open House", their midfield simply failed to show up and entertain their guests at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas, and unable to keep possession or string any number of passes together, equally as inept at moving the ball forward or linking up on the offense when it mattered the most.

Denied time and space, DPMM FC's poor marking and positioning also made it an uncharacteristic performance from Brunei's only professional side who at least can be lucky that they have Friday's game against Gombak United FC to make amends for their mistakes.

With their main rivals all dropping points last week, DPMM FC who remain third in the table will be gutted to have been unable to capitalise on their opponents' slip-up.

Harimau Muda, meanwhile, moved from sixth to fifth.

The impressive Wan Zack Haikal gave the visitors a deserved 26th minute lead after shooting from a tight angle and beating Wardun Yussof at his near post, and though Shahrazen Said would even the scores seconds after the restart when latching onto an Ivan Jerkovic pass, DPMM FC weren't able to sustain the kind of attacking momentum they are capable of.

Towering centre-back Tales Ricarte dos Santos was forced to leave the game in the 80th minute after an injury and his presence was sorely missed when Wan Zaharulnizam powered home a 87th minute winner after some static defendinginside the box.

"We deserved a draw with the chances we created," claimed DPMM FC coach Vjeran Simunic, who saw his side lose their first home game of the season 2-1 to Singapore Armed Forces FC on June 23.

"Maybe it was because of Hari Raya ...Open houses ... But Harimau Muda are an excellent team. They were fresh, they were hungry. They can be champions," noted the Croatian grimly.
His counterpart was understandably happier.
"We lost our last two games so it's good to have three points back," said Ong Kim Swee.
"We showed our calibre today despite not having some key players. I'd win the league if I had all my players fit," said the coach, who agreed that dos Santos' injury contributed to the win.
Setting the tone for the rest of the tie, Wardun had to come off his line to clear a threat from D Saarvindran after just one minute.
Wan Zaharulnizam hit the side netting in the seventh minute and DPMM FC's Azwan Salleh had a free-kick that was easily saved by Harimau Muda custodian Izham Tarmizi in the 13th minute, the goalkeeper effectively dealing with any crosses and corners throughout the game.
Though the hosts enjoyed a spell of pressure after the 15-minute mark, a through ball to Wan Zack Haikal who was creating all sorts of trouble on the right flank saw the unmarked midfielder rifle home a shot past Wardun.
Simunic had seen enough and threw on Shahrazen's brother Adi for Ghanian striker Osman Basiru who was already on one yellow card and had committed at least three fouls.
DPMM FC skipper Rosmin Kamis shot straight at Izham in the 43rd minute and dos Santos's header which hit the side netting two minutes later was all the DPMM FC fans had to savour as first half highlights.
They were still finding their seats when Shahrazen netted straight after the kick-off, Jerkovic laying off a long-ball to the striker for his team-leading ninth S-League goal of the season.
Making his home debut, striker Patrick Roberto Daniel Da Silva's best chance came off a 51st minute header from an Adi cross though the crowd was more animated when Shahrazen produced a diving save from Izham after stealing the ball off Wan Zack Haikal and pulling the trigger ten minutes later.
More slick passing opened space for substitute Thamil Arasu in the 65th minute, and though his shot was wide off the left post, it proved that Harimau Muda could strike at any time.
Hj Mohd Subhi Abdillah Hj Bakir was through on goal in the 71st minute but took one touch too many, with Da Silva shooting straight at Izham six minutes later.
They were made to pay when Wan Zack Haikal beat his marker on the right, put in a cross that was met by Syahul Azwari, who then moved it along to Wan Zaharulnizam who would not miss from hardly two yards out, with the referee dismissing accusations of off-side.
Though da Silva had a 89th minute free-kick which Izham saved at the top right-corner, and Shahrazen came close to scoring from inside the box but had his shot stopped before colliding with the glovesman, a draw would have been too big a Hari Raya gift to ask.

The Brunei Times

24 August 2012

Indonesia friendly for Brunei !

Brunei National Team will play  a friendly against Indonesia on 26. September report Jakarta Casual

This is the first match for Brunei NT since 8. April 2009 !

12 August 2012

DPMM FC are the champs

Sunday, August 12, 2012
DPMM FC marked their return to Singapore football by grabbing the Singapore League Cup last night, beating underdogs Geylang United FC 2-0 to become the first side to win the competition twice.

DPMM FC claimed the 2009 trophy their first major international haul after a penalty shoot-out win against Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC, who they disposed off 2-0 in Tuesday's semi-finals.

They were unable to complete their 2009 Singapore League (S-League) campaign after FIFA suspended Brunei, and the fact that this was their first season back at competitive football after two years should make last night's win all the more memorable.

The team will be back at 2:05pm today and they are sure to receive a rousing reception at the Brunei International Airport from their legions of fans who could not make the trip to Singapore.

DPMM FC's top scorer in the league, Shahrazen Said put DPMM FC in front after a 36th minute header from a tight angle, and though Geylang would dominate the second half, the visitors would weather the storm and add to their lead when Azwan Salleh who provided the pass for the first goal hit a jaw-dropping freekick from distance which bounced into goal after deflecting off both posts in the 76th minute.

The pride of Brunei were always the favourites not only have they beaten Geylang in their previous three encounters, they are also 10 spots above them in the S-League.

Though Brunei's only professional club had led the Singapore League (S-League) by as many as five points, their second-round slump mean they currently lie third four points behind Albirex Niigata (S) FC but with a game in hand.

Geylang might be bottom of the 13-team table, but for both sides, all thoughts of their respective S-League campaigns were cast aside when they stepped onto the artificial turf at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore last night.

DPMM FC's Patrick Roberto Daniel Da Silva carved the game's first real chance after shooting straight at goalkeeper Ridhuan Barudin after a one-two with Ivan Jerkovic in the 13th minute a shot which the Brazilian really should have buried.

Pulling all the strings in midfield, Jerkovic had the chance to put DPMM FC ahead in the 17th minute but his free-kick sailed over the left post.

Four minutes later, the Croatian saw his shot from a smart Sairol Hj Sahari back-pass swerve wide off the right post.

DPMM FC goalkeeper Wardun Yussof was quick enough to tip out Michael King's header which captain Rosmin Kamis headed towards his own goal in the 23rd minute, and though they were on the ascendancy, DPMM FC were nearly caught out on the counter-attack. King was incorrectly judged offside after a Jozef Kaplan defence-splitting through ball three minutes later.

DPMM FC finally made their dominance count when Azwan sent in an inviting cross from the left wing, with Shahrazen stooping low to head the ball past Ridhuan and going on to celebrate on slumped knees.

The goal seemed to give the Eagles a new-found pair of wings, and they ended the half with Stefan Milosevic testing Wardun and Kaplan nearly grabbing an equaliser if not for a miskick inside the box.

The Eagles were simply soaring in the second half, even if South Korean Mun Seung-man was harshly shown a yellow card for a dive inside the box despite being tackled from behind by Sairol.

Stating their intentions, Milosevic had a curler which rattled the bar in the 50th minute, Kaplan had a chance which was scrambled clear six minutes later and Wardun had to be on his toes to push away a long-range free-kick from Ang Zhiwei.

Wardun who made back-to-back saves in the 4-3 penalty shoot-out during the 2009 final against SAF FC kept his team in the game with a save from a King shot, with towering centre-back Tales Ricarte dos Santos next to the rescue after racing back to clear the threat when Milosevic was put through on goal in the 65th minute.

Seconds later, his compatriot Da Silva wasted another scoring chance with a tame effort after racing past three defenders when Jerkovic had put him through on goal.

It was up to Azwan to find the second goal, and stepping up for a free-kick on the right, scored with a marvelous effort reminiscent of the injury-time winner he bagged during DPMM FC's 1-0 win over Young Lions (Singaporean national Under-23 team) in the S-League in April.

Watching the players rush to Azwan in celebration, Ridhuan who had let in only one goal in their four previous games in the tournament was left fuming with what could best be described as a freak of a free-kick.

But though they were dejected, Geylang were definitely not defeated.

A slack back-pass from dos Santos was nearly gobbled up by Milosevic in the 85th minute, and the experienced Wardun did well to come out and clear the danger.

King and Milosevic would both create chances which were left unconverted, and in the end, Geylang's fairy-tale did not have a happy ending.

DPMM FC, though, will be revelling in their second Singapore League Cup in as many years.The Brunei Times

DPMM FC won Singapore League Cup !

DPMM FC won Singapore League Cup beating Geylang United 2-0 today

08 August 2012

DPMM FC book final berth

Wednesday, August 8, 2012
VJERAN Simunic's men are now just one win away from being crowned champions of the Singapore League Cup.

The Bruneian side eliminated familiar foes Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC 2-0 in an epic semi-final battle last night at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.

DPMM FC finally avenged their loss against the warriors after the latter handed DPMM FC their first home loss of the S-League season at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas on June 23.

"It was a revenge. It feels good to win against one of the best teams in Singapore. We lost to SAF twice before and we learned from our mistakes and played very well in the game," said Simunic.

"We are very happy with the win and this is a big result for Brunei Football. We are happy to win this for our big boss the Crown Prince (His Royal Highness Prince Hj Al-Muhtadee Billah, the Crown Prince and Senior Minister at the Prime Minister's Office) and for the football fans in the country," added the head coach.

"All of the players are the men of the match tonight. All the players, from goalkeeper Wardun Yussof at the goal-post to Osman Basiru upfront, were fantastic tonight. They were excellent and they worked very hard."

DPMM FC started brightly when Brazilian Tales Ricarte Dos Santos opened the scoring after connecting on a corner kick from Azwan Salleh in the 10th minute.

This is the second consecutive match that the Brazilian centre-back has put his name on the scoresheet in the tournament.

SAF FC were doing much of the defending in the second half with DPMM FC holding on to the ball for much of the time but they were unable to create many clear-cut chances as the warriors did a good job of keeping the ball away from their goal.

The game was heading for a nervous final 10 minutes until the Said brothers worked their magic.

Shahrazen Said, the 2006/2007 Malaysian Super League top goalscorer, dribbled past two defenders just outside the box before sending the ball across for his younger brother Adi Said who calmly slot the ball past goalkeeper Sharil Jantan to seal the win in the 79th minute.

SAF FC have not made it into the last four of a cup competition since 2009, when they were beaten by DPMM FC in the final of the League Cup on penalties.

2010 saw them crash out of the RHB Singapore Cup at the first hurdle and they fell to Sengkang Punggol in the League Cup quarterfinals.

They dropped out of both competitions at the quarter-finals stage in 2011.

DPMM FC will face either Tampines Rover or Geylang United in the final on Saturday, with the two teams facing off in the second semi-final at the Jalan Besar Stadium today.

The Brunei Times 

07 August 2012

Shahrazen calls for repeat of Cup success

Tuesday, August 7, 2012
SHAHRAZEN Said believes DPMM FC's spirit can guide them to the Singapore League Cup final as they prepare to take on Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC in the semi-finals tonight.

Shahrazen was again instrumental for DPMM FC in their quarter-final penalty shoot-out triumph over Home United, as he stepped up to score the winning penalty on Saturday evening at Bishan Stadium, in Singapore.

Goalkeeper Wardun Yussof became DPMM FC's hero after pulling off two saves in the shootout, and Shahrazen insists the team must now seize the opportunity to reclaim the Singapore League Cup that they have won in 2009.

"We are just two games away from winning the title. We won the cup back in 2009, we defeated SAF 5-4 on penalties and we are aiming to win the title again this year," said Shahrazen.

"The preparation ahead of the semi-final match has been good. The mood is great and the players are in high spirit ahead of the game. I am not sure if I will be able to score this time around, but I will do my best to help the team to win the game in any way possible, that is most important," added the 2006/2007 Malaysian Super League top goalscorer.

Pg Hj Muhd Waslimin PSJ Pg Hj Abd Momin, the DPMM FC manager, meanwhile told The Brunei Times that the squad are ready ahead of the semi-final match against SAF tonight. However DPMM FC will be without experienced defender Pg Sallehuddin Pg Damit, who sustained injury against Home United on Saturday.

"The players are looking forward to the game. The atmosphere in the training ground was great. The players are ready and all of them are fit except for Pg Sallehuddin, who got injured in the quarter-final game against Home United," said Pg Hj Muhd Waslimin.

"It will be a 50-50 game. SAF is a good team and they have good midfielders. I am expecting our midfielders to work extra hard in the game," he added.

Many of the players who won the competition three years ago are still playing in the current team, and they will all remember that it was the club's first major international trophy and the first time a foreign side lifted the cup in the history of the tournament.

The Brunei Times 

Winning hearts and titles FOOTBALL

Monday, August 6, 2012
MAJRA FC is probably one of the most loved national football teams in the Sultanate after their football fans were awarded the best club supporter in the 2004/2005 edition of the Brunei Premier League II season.

Known for their exciting modern style of football and bringing up decent young footballers over the years, they have been able to capture the admiration and respect of both spectators and football clubs in the country.

Founded by Hj Majid Dato Paduka Hj Zainal, the chairman of Majra FC, the club is run by Hj Suhaimi Hj Majid, the manager of the club.

Since its establishment in 2003, the club biggest achievement however remains being crowned the champions of the DST Group Brunei League Cup final in 2011. The club's manager Hj Suhaimi is aiming for silverware to their club's cabinet by winning the Brunei FA Cup this year but insisted that it is not going to be an easy task for the club.

Winning the Brunei League Cup was the biggest achievement in the history of the club. Adi Said scored the winner in the final minute of the game against the resilient MS ABDB. Of course, the aim is to win the tournament, but it is not going to be easy. "We have big clubs such as MS ABDB, QAF FC and Jerudong FC in the competition and as well as new team that has been surprisingly performing very well in the tournament," said Hj Suhaimi.

The duo of Mohd Azri Zahari and Abang Norsilmy Abang Hj Taha has been the cornerstone of the team's success in the Brunei FA Cup, displaying outstanding performance of football in the attack.

All the players contributed very well in every game this year but Mohd Azri has improved tremendously over the past few months. "Since Adi's move to DPMM FC, we have problem in attacking option."

All the staff have been monitoring Azri's development over the months and decided to put him upfront as a striker. "The plan paid off when he scored in most of the games in the DST National Football League and we were surprised on how quickly he adapted to his new role."

"Our new signing Abang Norsilmy will be influential for us in the second round of the Brunei FA Cup, we need his experience in big games. We will try our best to win and we all knew that we need to be at our best to win the tournament, " the manager said.

"We have not been training for quiet a while but we are planning to organise some friendly games this month to prepare us for the second round of the Brunei FA Cup after Hari Raya," he added.

In 2004, Majra FC began their football campaign in the national league in extraordinary manner by winning all the matches that saw them being promoted into 2004/2005 Brunei Premier League II season.

The following year saw Majra FC winning the 2004/2005 Brunei Premier League II after recording eight wins, two draws and one loss throughout the campaign and earning their right to fight in the top-flight Brunei Premier League I. The Brunei Times