04 October 2016

Kean praises steadfast defence

DPMM FC coach Steve Kean was pleased with the defensive showing of his charges especially late on in their 1-0 win over Tampines Rovers FC in the S-League on Saturday night.
Azwan Ali Rahman’s goal in the fourth minute separated the two sides at the Jurong West Stadium in Singapore — propelling the Brunei side to second place on 41 points, one ahead of the Stags, who have two games in hand.
“The team defended really well especially in the end when Tampines had nothing to lose and had thrown everything forward,” said Kean in a post match conference as quoted on the S-League website.
“We showed the desire not to give up and another pleasing aspect was seeing my creating players from the front, coming back to defend right from the start,” added the Scotsman.
“When we came here, we had some psychological block that we can’t beat Tampines. But I said why not, when we are a good team.
“We know how Tampines were going to play, we know Jermaine Pennant and we know how he was going to have a touch on the ball and I felt our defenders had done really well tonight (Saturday night),” continued the former Blackburn Rovers manager.
Kean remains hopeful of a second place finish in the competition and is confident that they can complete their campaign on a high against Balestier Khalsa FC on October 26.
“We’re still going for second, even though we have one game left and with the form we are in, I am sure we can go on and win our next game,” said Kean.
On the other hand, Tampines coach Akbar Nawas felt that they can only fault themselves for not capitalising on their chances.
“We only have got ourselves to blame and we had kicked ourselves in the foot for not converting our chances,” said Akbar.
“We took things lightly, became complacent and made mistakes that we should not think we can get away from.
“In football, we don’t get that luxury all the time and it is unacceptable to pass the ball in the middle and get caught,” he added.
“We have trained on how to work on the ball and even from the very first minute of the game, I have asked the players to concentrate and focus right from the start,” concluded Akbar.
The Stags could have closed the gap on leaders Albirex Niigata (S) FC, who were shocked 2-0 by Warriors FC the night before.
With only three fixtures left, Tampines trail the Japanese outfits by seven points.
Albirex can wrap up their first S-League title should they beat Hougang United FC at the Jalan Besar Stadium on October 14 before Tampines take on the Garena Young Lions (Singapore national under-21 team) at the same venue the next day.

The Brunei Times

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