26 April 2015

Ramazotti, Sergio on target

Saturday, April 25, 2015

DPMM FC overcame Singapore League (S-League) defending champions and leaders Warriors FC 3-1 in a heated encounter which saw both teams reduced to 10 men last night.
Rafael Ramazotti netted a brace in the first half, bringing his tally to a league high of eight goals, before Paulo Sergio netted a penalty in injury time, his third straight game getting on the scoresheet and fourth of the season.
The victory at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore sees the Brunei side remain unbeaten and they are now level on points with second-placed Albirex Niigata (S) FC with 16 points.
They are now only two points adrift from leaders Warriors, who beat them to the S-League title last season, but have two games in hand.
DPMM FC got off to a rough start but were fortunate Warriors failed to capitalise.
The Warriors should have scored just 50 seconds into the match after Nicolas Velez got on the end of a Miroslav Pejic cross from the left at the far post, but he could only fire wide.
They got another chance the next minute after Velez broke down the right before pulling it back for Pejic in the middle, but DPMM FC shotstopper Wardun Yussof produced a good save.
DPMM FC broke the deadlock in the seventh minute after Ramazotti rose the highest to head home Azwan Ali Rahman's freekick from the right.
The lead was doubled just four minutes later after Warriors gave the ball away in their own half before Azwan Ali put Ramazotti through to flick it past Warriors goalkeeper Daniel Ong.
The visitors came close to add to the tally in the 21st minute after a good one-two by Azwan Ali and Sergio saw the latter unleash a shot but Ong got a touch to it.
Velez tried one from outside the box in the 26th minute but it went straight to Wardun.
DPMM FC had a good opportunity off a counter attack in the 31st minute with Md Hendra Azam Md Idris finding Sergio upfront, and though the Portuguese managed to get past his marker, he couldn’t get his shot past Ong.
DPMM FC were patient with the ball and were stringing passes together to keep possession.
Warriors came out a different side after the interval and should have pulled one back in the 50th minute after a two-on-one situation.
Velez puts it to his strike partner Fazrul Nawas on the left, but the forward fired just inches wide off the far post.
Velez got past two markers on the left in the 55th minute before firing an attempt which was cleared off the line by DPMM FC sweeper Brian McClean.
The Warriors were inching closer to a goal as Pejic and Fazrul had back-to-back attempts saved by Wardun the next minute.
Kevin McCann tried one from outside the box two minutes later and Wardun was required to push it over the bar.
The Warriors finally got on the scoresheet from the ensuing corner after it was taken short for Velez to dribble into the box and curl one into the left corner to make it 2-1.
Velez and Joe Gamble were shown straight red cards for a scuffle in the 71st minute, with the Warriors suffering more from the dismissal as it took the wind out of their sails in the comeback attempt.
The hosts should have equalised three minutes later after substitute Shi Jiayi launched a shot on target, but Wardun was up to the task to deny him. Pejic pounced on the rebound but fired just wide from close range.
Sergio could have killed the game in the 85th minute but his shot went across the face of goal.
DPMM FC were awarded a penalty after Ramazotti put Sergio through on goal in the 91st minute when he rounded the Warriors custodian before being brought down inside the box – and Sergio slotted his strike down the middle to kill off the match.
Ramazotti could have notched a hat-trick in the final minute of additional time, but Ong went full stretch to deny him.

The Brunei Times

Tabuan Muda win second game

Thursday, April 23, 2015

TABUAN Muda (the national under-23 football team) picked up their second win in the DST Super League with a 2-1 victory over the Royal Brunei Police Force Sports Council (MS PDB) last night.
It was the perfect start for Tabuan Muda after they grabbed the lead in the eighth minute through Md Nur Syazwan Halidi at the Balapan Track and Field of the Hassanal Bolkiah National Sports Complex in Berakas.
The lead was short lived, though, as Md Nazirul Arsat equalised for the policemen three minutes later.
Aimmil Rahman Ramlee restored the advantage for Tabuan Muda in the 34th minute and it proved to be the difference between the two teams.
Tabuan Muda are on seven points from four matches and second in the 10-team table behind leaders Najip I-Team, who are on nine points and have a game in hand.
MS PDB are currently in third and have four points to their name.
The competition continues tomorrow with the Royal Brunei Armed Forces Sports Council (MS ABDB) up against Kilanas FC at the Tutong Sports Complex at 8.15pm.
Tabuan Muda are gearing up for the upcoming 28th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Singapore.
They have been drawn in Group B with defending champions Thailand, 2009 and 2011 winners Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos and Timor Leste. Hosts Singapore are in Group A with Indonesia, Myanmar, Cambodia and the Philippines.
The dates of the matches have yet to be announced, but the football competition will start on May 29.

The Brunei Times

S-League to be scrapped?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

SCRAPPING the Singapore League (S-League) was one of the proposals brought up in a “heated” meeting between Football Association of Singapore (FAS) management and S-League club chairmen on Monday night.
It was reported in The Straits Times yesterday that a “war of words” occurred in a meeting at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore held to review the league which is currently in its 20th season, but S-League CEO Lim Chin clarified in statement that “just strong views were exchanged”.
“We are in the preliminary stages of discussion and exploring possibilities. At this stage, it is too preliminary to go into details what form and shape the S-League will take in future,” he said in a FAS statement.
The S-League club chairmen said that LionsXII (Singapore team playing in the Malaysian Super League) and the Young Lions (Singapore national under-23 football team) are depriving the S-League clubs of fielding top local players, and therefore killing the league.
Three proposals were put forward, with the one most favoured by the club chairmen being to disband the LionsXII and the Young Lions to distribute its national players back to the S-League.
Another proposal was to scrap the S-League, focus on three to four Singaporean teams and get them to compete in regional competitions such as the Malaysian Super League and the proposed ASEAN Super League.
The other option was for the S-League to continue in its current form, but with younger players.
“We are exploring options to make the S-League better and on the whole, Singapore football,” said Lim in the FAS statement.
“In discussions, there will always be differences in views and opinions when it comes to issues and ideas, and that makes for a healthy and robust debate.
“At the end of the day, everyone involved in this review, including the S-League chairmen, only want the best for Singapore football.
“Over the years, a number of platforms have been set up to try to help realise our common aim of producing a strong national team.
“The S-League is one. So too are the Young Lions and the LionsXII. The S-League remains united with the FAS in finding the best way forward for the S-League.
“The three proposals that were reported in the report were just suggestions that were being bounced around for debate.
“Moving on, we will also approach all our other stakeholders and interest groups for their feedback before putting forth a proposal to the relevant agencies for their continued support.
“The ST report indicated that I would be supportive of some of the ideas discussed. I like to state that, like everyone else, my wish is to see a strong and vibrant S-League, and to see it help the FAS to achieve its goal of producing a strong and successful national team.
“I remain committed to that goal to working together with everyone to achieve it,” concluded the statement.
It was also stated in The Straits Times report that Singapore national coach Bernd Stange doesn’t attend the S-League matches, a statement Lim rebutted.
“It is not true that Bernd Stange, the national coach does not attend S-League matches,” said Lim.
“I wish to state categorically that Bernd is a regular face at S-League and other local matches,” he added.
Balestier Khalsa FC, S Thavaneson, was present in the meeting and reiterated that only strong views were put forward.
“There was no “war of words” that night. There were just strong views put forward by all the S-League chairmen and FAS officials,” said Thavaneson.
“We may have differing views which is common in most discussions but we stand united in wanting Singapore football to succeed,” he added.

The Brunei Times

17 April 2015

Singapore Cup : DPMM directly to quarterfinals

17 April 2015
Written By: Kenneth Ho

The draw for the RHB Singapore Cup 2015 was conducted on 17 April, at the Ocean Financial Centre.
Balestier Khalsa, Brunei DPMM, Home United, Tampines Rovers and Warriors FC were given a bye and went straight into the two-legged quarter-finals.
Albirex Niigata (S), Hougang United and Geylang International were unseeded and will compete with three invited foreign teams - Global FC (PHI), Lao Police (LAO), Svay Rieng FC (CAM) - for a spot in the quarter-finals.
Hougang will play the first match of the Cup, after being drawn against Global FC. Geylang will face Lao Police, while Albirex take on Svay Rieng.

Sergio strikes again

Friday, April 17, 2015

PAULO Sergio strikes again for DPMM FC!
The Portuguese forward netted the only goal to see DPMM FC emerge 1-0 winners over a resilient Geylang International FC in the Singapore League (S-League) last night - the second straight game that he found the back of the net after scoring a double during his debut in the 3-2 victory against Hougang United FC on April 4
According to the S-League’s twitter feed, DPMM FC’s latest signing dribbled past three markers before unleashing a fierce shot from the six-yard box.
Geylang custodian Yazid Yasin got a hand to it, but he was not able to prevent the visitors from bagging all three points at the Bedok Stadium in Singapore.
DPMM FC are the only unbeaten side left in the 10-team competition and are up to second place with 13 points from five matches.
Albirex Niigata (S) FC are at the summit with 15 points but have played two games more.
On field captain Sairol Hj Sahari expressed his satisfaction that the visitors managed to grab the win last night.
“Coach (Steve Kean) was delighted with our performance tonight (Thursday night) as we all followed his instructions,” said Sairol in an interview with The Brunei Times after the triumph.
“Geylang are not an easy team to play against even though they’ve got a new squad.
“We kept the ball very well even though the field was not in the best condition. But I’m happy for my team and teammates and we hope to keep the momentum going,” continued the DPMM FC left-back.
Both teams got off to a slow start and it was the visitors who troubled the hosts early on.
Rafael Ramazotti, the S-League top scorer with six goals, got at the end of Joe Gamble’s freekick in the ninth minute but his header was deflected out.
DPMM FC were going with their long ball tactics but the Eagles dealt well with them, and in the 25th minute, Bruno Castanheira got away from three players but was unable to find a teammate in the box.
Geylang got their first shot on target in the 40th minute with Tastsuro Inui firing from the edge of the box, but the ball was caught by DPMM FC shotstopper Wardun Yussof.
The hosts went on the counter and skipper Jozef Kaplan pulled the trigger twice in the 43rd minute, only for DPMM FC sweeper Brian McLean to close down both his attempts.
Another chance came for Geylang just before the half-time whistle but Castanheira headed over Inui’s corner.
Azwan Ali Rahman almost broke the deadlock for DPMM FC just two minutes after the interval but his free-kick bounced over Yazid and came off the woodwork.
Sergio shot at goal from 35 yards after seeing Yazid off his line in the 57th minute but the ball went over the bar.
Najib Hj Tarif wasted an opportunity after finding space in the box in the 65th minute but got it wrong on his attempt, and though DPMM FC were getting closer to breaking the deadlock, they couldn’t find a way past Yazid.
Sairol tried from distance in the 73rd minute but Yazid palmed it away, and Azwan Ali got a shot off from inside the box three minutes later but the Geylang custodian once again produced another save.
The tie could have gone either way before Sergio’s moment of brilliance.
The S-League continues today with Tampines Rovers FC going up against defending champions Warriors FC at the Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore.

The Brunei Times

Tough draw for Brunei

Thursday, April 16, 2015

TABUAN Muda (the national under-23 football team) have been handed a tough draw at the upcoming 28th Southeast Asian (SEA) Games in Singapore.
The draw - which was conducted in Singapore yesterday - has Brunei playing in Group B together with defending champions Thailand, 2009 and 2011 winners Malaysia, Vietnam, Laos and Timor Leste.
Hosts Singapore are in Group A with Indonesia, Myanmar, Cambodia and the Philippines.
Tabuan Muda head coach Stephen Ng Heng Seng knows the level of competition and believes they just have to put in more work down the stretch.
“We have a tough grouping with the top three ASEAN teams. We just have to accept it and prepare ourselves more now,” said Ng in an interview with The Brunei Times last night.
“We have to put in more focus and work harder considering the strength of our opponents.
“We still have some time left and we will just continue to work,” continued Ng ahead of the May 29 kick-off for the sport.
Brunei lost all four of their matches at the 27th SEA Games in Naypyidaw, Myanmar, in 2013.
They were hammered 7-0 by Vietnam in the first game and fell 2-0 to then defending champions Malaysia in the second.
The Sultanate failed to get on the scoresheet in three matches after losing 2-0 to Singapore.
They were saved the blushes with Adi Said finding the back of the net twice in their last match against Laos - but they still went down 3-2.
Thailand beat Indonesia 1-0 in the final while Singapore bagged the bronze medal by beating Malaysia 2-1.

The Brunei Times

07 April 2015

Perkasa pick up first win

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

PERKASA are off the foot of the DST Premier League table after beating Tunas FC 2-1 last night.
A brace from Ak Md Khairul Azim Pg Hj Mohammad, who scored in the 33rd and 68th minute, helped Perkasa jump from bottom of the 11-team table to ninth with four points from as many games.
Tunas’s Muhammad Ari Saizulfadhli Ariffin got on the scoresheet in the 70th minute in the game at the Tutong Sports Complex.
Perkasa move above Setia Perdana and Rimba Star FC with the win. Setia Perdana are also on four points from four games but trail Perkasa on goal difference.
Rimba Star, meanwhile, are the only team in the competition yet to have picked up a win - their sole point coming when they drew 2-2 with 10-man BESA FC on Feb 20.
Setia Perdana can shift to sixth if they beat Brunei Shell Recreation Club in tonight’s game at the Tutong Sports Complex.

The Brunei Times

NFABD names new National Youth team coaches

Monday, April 6, 2015

AS PART of the National Football Association of Brunei Darussalam’s (NFABD) future National Youth Teams’ development plan, Fujiwara Takao has been named as the new head coach for the National (Tabuan) U14 team. Takao has a Japan Football Association (JFA) ‘A’ Coaching Licence, which is equivalent to the AFC ‘A’ Certificate with extensive coaching experiences at the local, regional, national and international level, NFABD said in a statement on Sunday.
With support from JFA, NFABD believes the Tabuan U14 players would reap benefits from having a different and unique perspective of training and development.
As for the other three National Youth teams, Tabuan Muda (U23), Tabuan U18 and Tabuan U15, NFABD has placed highly qualified coaches who are committed to providing specialised training programme and development for their respective youth teams, the statement said.
Stephen Ng Heng Seng is the head coach for Tabuan Muda team. Besides having an AFC Professional Diploma, he is a licensed AFC Coaching Instructor who can conduct AFC Coaching Courses in Asia.
Kwon Oh-Son is the head coach of Tabuan U18 team. He has an AFC ‘A’ Coaching Certificate and has led Brunei Darussalam to victory in the coveted Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy Cup in 2012.
As for the Tabuan U15 team, the head coach is Ali Hj Mustafa, a former national player who has an AFC ‘B’ Coaching Certificate.
Besides, these head coaches are assisted and provided with qualified Assistant and Goalkeeping coaches who have a minimum of an AFC ‘C’ Coaching Certificate.

The Brunei Times

Sergio special on debut gives DPMM FC win

Sunday, April 5, 2015

A PAULO Sergio double on his DPMM FC debut paved the way for a 3-2 comeback victory over Hougang United FC in the Singapore League (S-League) last night.
The win at the Hougang Stadium in Singapore sees DPMM FC stay unbeaten and move to the top of the 10-team table with 10 points from four matches.
The duo of Albirex Niigata (S) FC and Tampines Rovers FC are just a point back but have played a game more.
According to the updates on the S-League Twitter page, it was a disastrous start for the visitors after Kunihiro Yamashita headed home Shunsuke Nakatake’s freekick in the opening minute. Sergio opened his account for DPMM FC with the equalliser in the 13th minute.
Hougang got a chance in the 18th minute after Francisco Ela put Fareez Farhan through but he fired wide having only DPMM FC shotstopper Wardun Yussof to beat.
At the other end, Sergio notched his brace the next minute to put the visitors in front.
Rafael Ramazotti, who was named March’s S-League Player Of the Month earlier in the day, struck a powerful effort at goal but Hougang custodian Ridhuan Barudin was up to the task to parry his attempt in the 26th minute.
The pace of the match was slowed down with DPMM FC taking a more cautious approach after taking the lead.
The Brunei side gained a two-goal cushion after defender Brian McLean rose highest to head home Najib Hj Tarif’s cross in the 57th minute.
Ramazotti had a chance to add to the tally but watched his header off the target in the 71st minute.
Hougang were given a lifeline after Ela curled a ball from the edge of the box into the top corner in the 87th minute to make it 3-2.
He troubled again the next minute but could only steer a header straight to Wardun seeing DPMM FC claim all three points from the encounter.
The other match saw Balestier Khalsa FC ease past the Young Lions (Singapore national under-23 football team) 5-1 at the Toa Payoh Stadium in Singapore.
Fadhil Noh broke the deadlock in the 22nd minute before Emir Lotinac doubled the Tigers lead one minute before halftime.
A brace by Miroslav Kristic in the 68th and 74th minutes put the game beyond doubt.
Balestier were not done yet as Tarik Cmajcanin got his name on the scoresheet in the 79th minute before Iqbal Hamid Hussain netted a consolation for the Young Lions four minutes from time.
The competition continues today with Home United FC up against defending champions Warriors FC at the Yishun Stadium in Singapore.

The Brunei Times