29 July 2012

DPMM FC aware of threat

Sunday, July 29, 2012
DPMM FC hope to repeat their 2009 championship run when they take on Tanjong Pagar United FC in their Singapore League Cup opener at the Queenstown Stadium in Singapore tonight.

But, coach Vjeran Simunic is not entertaining such thoughts that his side will be first to win the trophy for the second time.

He also believes Tanjong Pagar, who are 11th in the Singapore League and lost to DPMM FC 3-2 when they met in the league on April 13, are a potent attacking threat.

"Tanjong Pagar have a tall, strong striker in Haitian-American Gilbert Bayonne," the DPMM FC coach pointed out on Wednesday.

"Tayaka Kawanabe is one of their best players he has already scored six goals in the Singapore League (S-League) this season.

"Plus they have an experienced midfielder in Carlos Delgado, so they are a team that can surprise anybody," he added.

DPMM FC face eight-time S-League champions Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) FC in their second Group A game on Wednesday and Simunic is adamant the Warriors which they beat 5-4 on penalties to claim the 2009 League Cup will be a tough nut to crack. More recently, SAF beat DPMM FC 2-1 on June 23, handing Simunic's men their first home loss of the S-League season.

Despite their historic 2009 League Cup triumph, which was DPMM FC's only major international trophy and marked the first time a foreign side lifted the cup, Simunic had every reason to be cautious as they touched down in Singapore yesterday evening.

The Croatian has seen his side dismayingly surrender their early-season, headline-grabbing form over the past two months, last Saturday's 3-1 win over Geylang United FC breaking a three-game losing streak during which they scored only one goal in 270 minutes of play.

By then, Brunei's only professional club had dropped from the summit of the 13-team table to fourth though the result against Geylang did lift them up to third.

Except for Harimau Muda, all other S-League clubs will be competing in this year's League Cup.

Divided into four groups of three, the top two in each group will advance to the quarterfinals which will be contested in a straight knockout format.

The four teams finishing bottom of their groups will enter the Plate competition, consisting of the semifinals and a final, scheduled to be held just before the League Cup final itself on 11 August.

Tonight's other game will see the Young Lions take on Hougang United FC in Group C play.

The Brunei Times

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