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Showing posts from November, 2005

Hold it Boys.. You are not man yet...

The sad victory over the Burmese had just confirmed that the U-23 will be packing their bags and head for the next flight home. So what does it tells us?? Simply put it down that reputation means nothing when the two teams square off on the field. Perhaps the tag of that as a Tiger Cup winners weighted heavily on the boys and that "scourge" (complacency) crept in, thus the outcome of the disappointment. No point of finger pointing now but the team owe the nation an apology. Face the music, boys because only then you know how to become a real man.

Boys.. U are just plain lucky but what's the point?

This match was deemed redundant (99%) even before the start of it. Since the Indonesians have the advantage now, having defeated the group leaders Vietnam in the earlier match. Except for Geylang's Fazrul Nawaz's shot that gave the lead, it was another poor scrappy game for the boys. Blunt as an unsharpened pencil up front, the U-23 yet again shown the incompetence in front of the goal. While, the defence had the Lady Luck to thank for. The "open play" by the Laotians looked threatening as they pricked open the porous defence of the Singapore side. Match commentator Mark Richmond commented that he "felt sorry" for custodian Lionel Lewis, as in front of him is the "shaky" defence led by skipper Baihakki Khaizan and Precious Emuejeraye, both he felt "failed to spread the confidence around". But the end of the day, the boys' fate lays in the hands of the Laotians, hoping they could repeat the same (but sharper) display aga

Remembering George Best (1945-2005)

(picture credit:BBC ) Tonight, we say goodbye to a very special person - George Best. The "fifth Beatle" as they called him. Despite his outstanding skills and chrisma, Best is also known for his notorious off the pitch lifestyle. While we say Goodbye to a legend, let's not forget the lessons he taught us, be it - the good or bad - from Pohui,whom only read but never see him in action (NA: wrote this as a one-off tribute to one of the greatest player who played the game.)

Arghhh!!!!!

Singapore 0 - 0 Indonesia Just could not believe it when Sharil Ishak's shot was blocked by the Indonesian 'keeper, when it appeared that the ball was heading towards to the goal! Moments after the agony, the referee blew the whistle to call the end of the game. Much better play from the boys but it wasnt good enough as the goals were not delivered. Coach Raddy shouted his voice to hoarse (clearly audible from the television set). The draw was too much for skipper Baihaikki, as he openly wept in disappointment. The hope of making towards the semi-finals is all but almost evaporated. - Instant thoughts after viewing the game on TV

OVER-HYPED??

(picture above: Papers painted a gloomy picture on the U23's SEA Games campaign ) When they left for the Philippines, the expectation on the national U-23 team was high. Who could blame us for all this hype surrounding these guys, after all, they are presumed to be the best squad to be played in the SEA Games, since the football event became a U-23 tournament. Ever since, the opening defeat by the Vietnamese, all concerned parties had painted a gloomy picture on whether the Cubs will once again falter at the group stages. So much so coach Raddy had planned for an all-offensive tactics when against the Indonesians on Thursday, which l hope it's not a signal that they had pressed the panic button, (though in order to advance to the final four, we must take full maximum points from the remaining matches.) Could it be the old complacency that always haunted the boys, when they are always the favourite? Obviously, the answer is a YES.. But till now that's not the iss

The new turf at the Jalan Besar stadium

Here l am writing this account from the media booth of the Jalan Besar stadia, from where the new playing surface is visible. Below are the pictures taken prior the start of the friendly match that marked the re-opening of the arena. Word of caution though, never ever do a " Jurgen Klinsmann " style of celebration on this artificial turf. (Picture above: the "left box" of the pitch) (Picture above: the "right box" of the pitch) (Picture above: the "centre-circle" of the pitch) Unfortunately, such a wonderful pitch that its maiden match played on it was totally an one-sided event. The visiting Thai "All Stars" coached by the legendary Piyapong Pue-On, failed to live up its reputation and gave an "All chumps" performance. Last but not least, these kids (pictured on the right) further marred the occasion for their irritating shouting and merry making (Arghh!!)

Mixed feeling

Well, just saw that the League authority had given the green light that will see the return of Gombak Utd FC, the merging of Sengkang Marine FC and Paya Lebar Punggol FC as "Sengkang-Punggol FC" plus the African-based Sporting Afrique FC. I'm not sure how the fans would react the inclusion of Sporting Afrique FC, after all, that "Planet FC" saga last year had left a pretty negative impression on these African footballers for their audacious claim they were "unbeatable". I'm glad to see the return of the Bulls (Gombak Utd) back to the scene, also hope for much better stability with the strategic alliance between Sengkang and Paya Lebar that would benefit the Hougang residents. Regrettably, Sinchi FC will still be part of the setup, which l sense those "empty promises" by this team will still be with us for yet another season. And now since the list is confirmed now, all teams are given a equal foothold to prepare their squad, l wou

Snapshots of the National Stadium

I'm not sure yesterday's Cup Final was my last visit to this 32-year old arena, that had brought us so many wonderful memories. Having made known that the National stadium is to be demolished next year or so, I decided to take a few shots of her before call it a day. (Above: the shot of the North stand ) (Above: Close up of the Grand stand) So long you are being seated here on these red chairs (as illustrated above ), you are having the best view of the house. Did you ever stomped your feet here to attribute the "Kallang Roar" whenever Singapore score?? (shot of the South stand) As the day draw to a close, here is what you expected to see, right outside of the press area - part of the Singapore skyline. Once, the sky is dark, it's another scenery ..

Jumpa Lagi, Coach Steve Darby

As the final whistle blew to call the end of the 2005 Singapore Cup final, Singapore football bid farewell to probably one of the finest coach that graced the land. Steve Darby - Love him or Hate him, let us not forget those colourful moments he shared with us. Known for his outspokenness that had restored a bit of vibrancy into the scene since the mellow down of R Vengadasalam, the former Rams manager (now at Tampines Rovers) However it was also his outspokenness that landed him into some troubles with the league authority, which were well-documented. (eg: his comment on the mandatory Beep test) Despite those negative issues, one must not forget he had restored the pride of the Protectors, that was badly bruised after the departure of Dutchman Roberts Alberts, who was succeed by Englishman Jason Withe, before Darby stepped in to replace Withe. Personally, I must say thanks to coach Darby for "introduce" me to the "real world of that of a journalist", after

END OF AN ERA??

(Unless I'm pretty sure of the topic I'm going to pen, if not I will place a "?" at the back of the headline) At the stroke of full time, the beleaguered (for this season) Home Utd salvaged their bruised pride and snatched the Singapore Cup, after came from behind to beat the star-studded Woodlands Wellington, who is still searching for their first piece of silverware since the start of the League. Indra Sahdan Daud saved the day for the 12000 fans (and the media folks, pictured on the left) at Kallang by netted home the winning goal on the 93rd minute. Sad to say, this victory marked the end of the career of Thai midfielder J Surachai and the departing of Lion's skipper Aide Iskandar and coach Steven Darby from the Bishan stadium. While Man of the Match Indra refused to elaborate his next move, despite of the speculation surrounded him, during the post-match press conference.

Gear up for the Cup Final....(not really a preview)

This coming Sunday will feature two of the cream of the crop of the local football. As coach Steve Darby will lead his charge out of the tunnel for the last hurray against the underachievers Woodlands Wellington, let's hope it will be a spectacular matcha one will never forget. Yes, it has been long season especially for the likes of Indra, Aide, Subramani, Bennette, Tat Chuan and etc, who been playing almost non-stop since last season. Definitely, the fatigueness is there.. But as the stage is set at the "Grand Old Lady" - the National Stadium. The same venue where the Lions lifted the Tiger Cup. Surely, the fans aren't gonna given a sloppy game for the setting of that of a Cup Final. Lionel Lewis should remember that day, when he picked the ball out of the goal eight times years back, when he played for Geylang Utd in one of those Cup Final .

S LEAGUE AWARDS NITE 2005

(Picture on the left, M C of the night Bernand Lim warming up the audience prior the start of the night.) Was one of the privileged few to attend this gala event, which was held at the Mediacorp TV Theater. Noh Alam Shah was named the "Player of the Year", while his striking partner Mirko Grabovac took the top scorer award as well as the "Player of the Decade" award. Pin-up boy Issey Nakajima of Albirex Niigata wrapped up the "Young Player of the Year" award. Pretty innovative in the way the organiser announced the list of nominees, especially, the "Coach of the Year" awards, which drew laughter from the house. In which, the five nominees (Ie: Young Lions' Fandi Ahmad, Albirex's Ichiro Otsuka, SAFFC's Ki m Poulsen, Woodland's Karim Bencherifa and eventual winner Tampines' Vorawan Chitavanich) were being portrayed as a group of school kids in a classroom und er the mercy of the "teacher" (pictured on t