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Tuesday, September 02, 2014

 

International Friendlies

06/09 Indonesia v Yemen (Sleman)
06/09 Singapore v Papua New Guinea (Hougang)
09/09 Singapore v Hong Kong (Hougang)
14/09 Indonesia v Malaysia (Sidoarjo)
20/09 Cambodia v Malaysia (Phnom Penh)

 

Players Angry With Match Officials Shock

Indonesia Super League

Persepam MU v Perseru 1-1 (Diego Zarza; Fred Mote) 2,401

Umm. This game was stopped in the 70th minute apparently after the ref did not give the home team a penalty. The fans started throwing plastic water bottles on the field, why always the water bottles, as players and officials jostled the match officials before security officials sprang into action and escorted them to their changing room.

After the match the manager of Persepam said it wasn't their, the club's fault, the disturbances had happened, he blamed the ref saying he wasn't fair! So there.

Putra Samarinda v PSM 2-1 (Ilija Spasojevic, Naser Al Sebai ;Syamsul Haeruddin) 3,354

Umm. This game suffered a lengthy delay in injury time when the home team were awarded a penalty. PSM players took exception to this decision and mobbed the ref and the linesman. One PSM ran on to the pitch to politely ask people to restart the game because he had a late bus to catch but the security services misunderstood his public transport concerns and charged on the pitch with batons raised.

PSM players protested for blood ages while at the other end the Pusam keeper sat down and did some fine needlework. At the core of the protests was PSM keeper Markus Horison, the former national team player well known for his diplomacy skills. Alas and alack, his talents went unappreciated and he got a yellow card for his troubles.

Despite all that brouha, the ref did not change his mind. Fancy! Pusam took the spot kick and scored to secure their ISL future.

More brouha. The official ISL website and another website state this game was played at Segiri Stadium. I was at the game, I wasn't at Segiri Stadium!

Some pictures can be found on Asian Football Pictures.

 

Malaysia's New TV Deal May Come At A Price

Short term thinking is a way of life for many except, perhaps, for Arsenal's Arsene Wenger. The now matters and the future can take care of itself. It is something I have often moaned about on these pages and the classic example, for me at least, is Arema back in 2009/2010.

They had a good coach in Robert Alberts and they had a good team including Singaporean imports Noh Alam Shah and M Ridwan and promising goalie Kurina Meiga coming through. They won the ISL for the first time in their history and all was set fair for some sustained success in Malang.

Of course the storm clouds started gathering towards the end of the season with rumours players were being owed money. One of the biggest clubs in the country with a support to match, they had problems paying the bills!

Of course the stars of that title success got fed up waiting and the team was soon broken up. It has taken Arema four years to mount another sustained title bid.

I was reminded of the Arema experience recently as I watched the unfolding drama in Malaysia over a new TV deal. Let's face it, Malaysia on the world stage is still pretty much a basket case. Humiliation has piled on humiliation be it the 5-0 loss at home to UAE to a farcical friendly against a Zimbabwe national team that wasn't a national team via all those KL players being banned for match fixing.

That makes the headlines. The step by step successes don't. Yes, Malaysia needs to be commended for the progress it has made in some areas. They won the AFF Cup in 2010 for the first time in their history between back to back SEA Games triumphs for example and their attempts to raise a new generation of players by having them compete in places like Slovakia and Australia shows an out of the box thinking rare in this region.

But that kind of stuff doesn't sell papers. It just ain't sexy.

A few years back, a private TV operator, Astro, came along, offered the Football Association of Malaysia a barrel full of cash and proceeded to show more live games and with better coverage. Football fans were getting world class coverage, with Shebby Singh punditry, for a fair to middling league blighted by allegations of match fixing and corruption. It seemed a pretty good deal.

The MSL has come on over the last few seasons with the infusion of cash that has benefited clubs like Johore Darul Takzim and Pahang but there are still too many games that have all the appeal of taking your least favourite aunt, or uncle to a Michael Bolton concert. Even me! I was in KL a few months back and there was a game on but after weighing the alternatives, football, sleep, football sleep, I decided to sleep. The prospect of going to see the two teams involved didn't really get the juices flowing.

That TV deal is to end soon and the FAM has now awarded a new deal to a company that has come in with a higher price. It wasn't always like that though...earlier in the year Astro were considered hot favourites to keep broadcasting Malaysian football. A tie up with Murdoch's promised the lure of increased overseas exposure. Imagine, people actually watching Malaysian games rather than just reading the shock horror headlines.

My understanding is the companies were keen to promote the MSL throughout South East Asia. Imagine, sitting in Chiang Mai, Hanoi or Balikpapan and switching on the old box and catching Safiq Rahim pulling the strings for JDT or a packed stadium roaring Kelantan on.

But the heady excitement of a few months ago soon passed. The attraction of Malaysian football being seen in a new, positive light around the region and, possibly, further afield, faded in the face of rival, higher, bids.

At the end of the day, the TV rights were sold to a different player as Astro decided to explore different opportunities. The FAM got more money, not much more but more, so the bean counters should be happy. It's business and we all seek to get the highest price we can.

But what price the image of Malaysian football? The likes of Selangor have a long and proud history yet they are little known outside of their home country. Would the FAM have been better going for a slightly lower bid and building on the experiences of the three previous years while expanding the appeal of the game?

This looks like an opportunity wasted.Football in South East Asia will continue to be looked upon by the rest of the world as the place to send big European teams on lucrative pre season tours, a place to sell replica shirts and a place where the local game is riddled with match fixing because no one will be seeing any different.

Better the guarantee of rice today than the hope of fish tomorrow.



Monday, September 01, 2014

 

Persela Implosion Opens Play Off Door For PSM

What to say about Persela in recent weeks. A team that has become a byword for consistency over the years have folded as the race for play off places increases. At one time considered a dead cert for a top four place in the eastern group, they are now tied in a three horse race with PSM and Persiba.

After an explosive run of six wins in seven games which saw them topping the table at one stage, they have been in freefall, winning just one in the last nine,and even that came against hapless Persiba Bantul.

Today sees PSM travel to Samarinda to play Pusam. Win that and the four legged feline will be right among the pigeons, putting all the pressure on Persela for their game tomorrow against the relentlessly efficient Persipura at their Surajaya Stadium.

Persiba Balikpapan may have the same number of points as PSM and Persela but they have played a game more and their goal difference is weaker

Everything will be decided on Friday. Persela will be confident as they host Perseru while PSM face a tricky trip to Mitra Kukar. In fact, if results go their way, it could be Persiba who are feeling the most confident ahead of the final round of fixtures; they travel to their namesake Persiba Bantul; a team that has lost their last eight games!

Persipura, Persebaya and Mitra Kukar are assured of their play off spots in the eastern division. Who will join them?

 

Persija & Pelita Bandung Raya Play Off Battle

Would you call Pelita Bandung Raya a surprise package this season? With just one game left to play in the Indonesia Super League, they sit fourth, a point ahead of Persija knowing victory against relegation threatened Persita this Friday could secure them a play off spot ahead of the supposedly more illustrious neighbours.

Both teams are unbeaten in their last four games but you would expect Pelita Bandung Raya, coached by Dejan Antovic, to go into Friday feeling more confident. They are certainly a team in form. Yesterday's win over Sriwijaya in Palembang, courtesy of two goals from Bambang Pamungkas, was their third straight three pointer. Indeed, they have lost just twice in their last 11 games, a remarkable turn around having lost three of their first eight games.

Contrast PBR's recent form with that of Persija who look back on three consecutive draws with just a single goal scored in those 270 minutes of football and it is easy to understand why there may be a few more nerves hanging around their training ground these next few days.

Persija's opponents are Barito Putra and they are assured of a mid table position so really have little to play for beyond new contracts of course! But PBR come up against a Persita side who will be gunning for a win in their bid to escape relegation. They will also have half an eye on East Java where Persik, their rival for that last relegation spot, go against Gresik United. A draw would be enough to save the White Tigers.

Mind you, the Persita camp doesnt seem to be a happy place these days what with the coach going public over management apathy and outstanding salaries; he is now of course the ex coach!

Friday promises to be a day of excitement and squeaky bum time as Persija and Pelita Bandung Raya seek to join Arema, Persib, Semen Padang, Persebaya, Mitra Kukar and Persipura in the play offs

 

Crowd Trouble Mars Sarawak's Cup Exit

There had been problems last week in Ipoh apparently between Perak and Sarawak supporters with accusations of racism being bandied around. Following that game, Perak advised their fans not to travel to Sarawak for the following game.

The game ended in a 1-1 draw, ending Sarawak''s interest in the Malaysia Cup for another season and after the game some of their fans went on the rampage, smashing up police vehicles, invading the pitch and throwing advertising hoardings.

An FA spokesman says the disturbances came as a surprise as there was no history of trouble between the two sets of supporters!



 

Indonesia Friendlies

06/09 Indonesia v Yemen (Sleman)
14/09 Indonesia v Malaysia (Sidoarjo)

 

Jakarta Casual Podcast

The latest podcast is out now. Among the topics being discussed are:


Plus all the results from a weekend of action in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore!

Catch it here...

Saturday, August 30, 2014

 

Persiba v Persiram 3-0

It was football but perhaps not as we know it.

The game started and it was scrappy but without the puppy power Scooby's nephew brought to the table.

If it was Persiram's intention to play pantomime villain then they played their role to the maximum, going to ground way too easily; it was embarrassing watching these big, hulky men throw themselves to the floor, roll around a bit then gingerly get back on their feet and carry on playing. Professional footballers, my arse. Fair play? Not a bit of it.

They may have had some grievances about poor decisions from the ref but any moral ground had been lost when the game was still in its infancy. Frustrations were building in their camp, both on the pitch and the touchlines and it was obviously in the first half things would kick off.

First half and there was a tussle on the far side of the field. Two players going for the ball, the fans there didn't like the way the Persiram player was getting stuck in, like I said the benefit of the doubt had gone from their earlier actions, and over came the plastic water bottles. The police and security officials responded quickly and piled on to the terrace while kids had it away on their toes.

On the touchline, the visitors' bench had lost any semblance of control and security officials piled in, were pushed away and piled in again. Honestly, it was more fun off the pitch than on it.


Two late goals by Patrice Nzekou secured the points for the home team, and fulfilled one tweep's prophecy, though the third came from a free kick incorrectly given by the linesman on the far side.

The ref blew the final whistle once he was handily placed to the tunnel...the sound had barely emitted
from his lips and he was away, chased by the unhappy Persiram players while security tried to keep the warring parties apart.

Meanwhile things were kicking off further down the sideline with Persiram officials making their frustrations clear. Odd but their players rolling around and going to ground had been long forgotten, they felt aggrieved and more pushing and shoving ensued.

The fans were hurling plastic water bottles and abuse while at least drink in a cardboard package was lobbed from the pitch...it exploded just in front of me, and that only riled the home support even more. Meanwhile, behind the goal the Persiba fans set off some flares and carried on singing and dancing to celebrate their win. As the smoke made its way slowly across the pitch I decided to head back to the hotel.

It was all very surreal and all very Indonesian!

Some more images can be seen on Asian Football Pictures.

Persiba v Persiram 3-0 (Ansou Toure, Patrice Nzekou 2) 2,379

 

Results 29/08

Indonesia Super League

Persipura v Mitra Kukar 1-1 (Immanuel Wanggai; Eric Weeks Lewis) 7,836

Following their mid week mauling of Kuwait SC in the AFC Cup, Persipura were held 1-1 by fellow title challengers Mitra Kukar at the Mandala Stadium in Jayapura. It was the hosts who took the lead just on the half hour but the prolific Liberian striker Weeks levelled just minutes later.

Persebaya v Persepam MU 3-1 (Emmanuel Kenmogne, Greg Nwokolo 2; Diego Zarza) 2,152

No one can accuse Persebaya fans of being glory hunters. This win put them three points clear of unbeaten Persipura with just a couple of games left and still the fans stay away, consistent in their insistence Persebaya ain't Persebaya but an imposter from another island.

Malaysia Cup

JDT II v Felda United 2-2 (og, Nicolas Delmonte; Edward Wilson Junior, Shukor Adan) 1,590
Pahang v LionsXII 1-2 (Dicksone Nwakaeme; Sufian Anuar, Mohana Madhu) 10,000
Penang v Kelantan 1-3 (Luis Ricardo; Wan Zahrul Nizam, Iswan Rosli, Forkey Doe) 5,000
ATM v JDT 0-1 (Luciano Figueroa) 4,500

SLeague

Warriors v Tampines Rovers 2-0 (Agu Casmir, Thomas Beattie)

Ok so the Warriors end their season defeating the champions and they sit second...for the time being. Next we get this nonsense where the top 6 and the bottom 6 split and play each other to keep the pools company happy and because they do it in other countries.

Serious question, how much motivation is there once a top 6 place has been secured and it doesn't matter who finishes 1st, 2nd etc?


Friday, August 29, 2014

 

Management Ignoring Persita

Now I am not sure if this is a bad thing or not but with Persita struggling to avoid the drop from Indonesia Super League, coach Fabio Oliveira's frustration has boiled over. Over night the Brazilian coach has tweeted...

3 bulan tdk di gaji...bonus belum di bayar...5 bln terahir tdk ada 1 pun perwakilan dr management yg datang ke lapangan melihat latihan tim.

Roughly translated, that says ...no salaries have been paid for three months, bonus has not been paid...for the last five months, no representative from the club management has come to see the team training.

You can be sure if the team had been winning, the batik wearing, kretek puffing management types would have been more than keen to have their photograph taken with the players  but that ain't happening.

Persita haven't won a game since early May, pauses to do some mental arithmetic, when they completed the double over Persijap, losing five of their seven games. Credible draws away to Arema and at home to Sriwijaya seem to count for nothing.

It's not as if it has been an easy season for Persita off the pitch. For the second successive season they have been forced to play their home games far from their home base of Tangerang. In 2013 they were forced to play at Kuningan, West Java while the current campaign sees them in Karawang, still West Java but still a trek.

As if that was not  bad enough, their home game against Persija was moved to Bantul while their crucial game at home to Persib has been switched to Bandung.

They sit 10th in the group and have two remaining games, one in hand on 9th placed Persik, with Pelita Bandung Raya, themselves with play off ambitions, due to visit Karawang on the last day of the season.

UPDATE - Fabio subsequently tweeted he would be stepping down with immediate effect.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

 

Results 27/08

Indonesia Super League

Persik v Arema 2-2 (Samsul Arif, Alberto Goncalves; Guy Bertrand, Faris Aditama)

This East Java derby had been moved from Kediri to Malang for security reasons (it was played at Gajayana Stadium), but it was western group leaders Arema who got the first shock when Bertrand gave the home team the lead. Arema, with just two defeats all season, fought back and entered injury time looking forward to three more points before Faris' late equaliser.

The result was academic for Arema; they had long since secured top spot. But it was a vital point for Persik as they struggle to escape the drop zone. But was it enough?

8 - Gresik United 18 4 8 6 20-19 20
9 - Persik 19 5 3 11 26-36 18
--------------------------------------
10 - Persita 18 4 3 11 19-30 15
11 - Persijap 18 2 1 15 11-47 7

As I type this, Persijap are hosting Gresik and a point for the team from East Java should ensure their safety. Persik's final game comes at home to Gresik while Persita can look forward to a 'home' game against Persib, to be played in Bandung, before hosting Pelita Bandung Raya on the final day of the season at Karawang.

SLeague

Balestier Khalsa v Hougang United 4-1 (Park Kang Jin, Yi Feng Po, Goran Ljubojevic 2); Diego De Oliviera)

The home team came from behind to crush the Cheetahs in this mid table clash. So there.

1 - DPMM 21 13 4 4 55-21 43
2 - Tampines 21 11 6 4 37-26 39
3 - Home United 21 11 5 5 46-31 38
4 - Warriors 21 11 5 5 42-29 38

19 - Kazuki Sakamoto (Albirex Niigata), Rodrigo Antonio Tosi (DPMM)
18 - Nicholas Velez (Warriors)
15 - Goran Ljubojevic (Balestier Khalsa), Geison Moura (Hougang United)

Malaysia Cup

Kedah v Sarawak 2-1 (Billy Mehmet, Syaszwan Tajudin; S Chanturu) 6,500
Perak v Terengganu 1-1 (OG; Ahmad Nordin Alias) 10,000
Selangor v Sime Darby 1-2 (Ahmad Hazwan Bakri; Fahrul Kamaruddin, Mateo Roskam) 3,500
T Team v PDRM 1-2 (Jimmy Musila; Ashfaq Ali 2) 700


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

 

AFC Cup Semi Final Draw

Erbil (Iraq) v Kitchee
Al Qadsia (Kuwait) v Persipura

Ties to be played 16 & 30 September.

 

PSIS Crowds Fall Despite Finishing Second

The last few seasons haven't been much fun for fans of PSIS. They have sat almost anonymously in Divisi Utama, bereft of cash and ambition.

2014 offered a glimmer of hope but despite a whole heap of local derbies, unlike teams in other groups, PSIS could have travelled by bus to every away game and still been back home before the sate guy had shut up and gone home. Just check out their crowds this season when they finished second in their group.

v Persipur 8,725
v PSIR 9,870
v Persitema 12,500
v Persiku 18,571
v Persis 15,127
v PPSM 9,654
v Persip 11,200

Those seven home games saw an average crowd of 12,235, above the average in the Indonesia Super League.

Mind you, those numbers were quite substantially down on the 2013 when they attracted an average 20,027 (the first three games were from the play offs after PSIS finished 3rd in their group).

v PS Biak 15,000
v PS Bangka 18,000
v Persebaya 25,000

v Persikabo 21,900
v Persikad 25,000
v Persitema 10,278
v Persip 25,000
v Persiku 22,000
v Persipur 22,000
v Persitara 14,125
v PSCS 22,000

UPDATE - I understand that in 2014 PSIS have been selling match tickets with a bar code meaning anyone without a ticket cannot enter the stadium.

 

Persigubin Awarded Play Off Spot After Persewon No Show

Persewon went in to the final round of Group 8 Divisi Utama fixtures in second place and seemingly on course for a play off spot. But then, inexplicably, they no showed for their final game of the season.

They were three points clear of 3rd place Persigubin and possessed a better goal difference...they would only have to turn up and they would have gone through to the play offs.

But they couldn't even do that. Instead, they stayed home and Persigubin get awarded the game 3-0. And the play off spot.

I wonder what the players and fans think of that!

Indonesian football truly moves in mysterious ways...



 

Singapore Warned Over AFF Cup Ticket Prices

SINGAPORE — “Affordable” and “comfortable” are the key words coming from the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) as it ponders ticket prices for the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup, which Singapore will co-host at the new National Stadium in November.
Following public perception of high ticket prices (S$45-S$180) for the Juventus vs Singapore Selection game at the same venue, the FAS insists it is working hard to get the pricing just right for the eight-team tournament, which runs from Nov 22 to Dec 4.
FAS marketing and communications director Gerard Wong told TODAY: “We will make sure that ticket prices will be affordable for the masses, and comfortable for a family of four (for example) should they decide to watch the championship. Our objective is to fill up the stadium and bring back the Kallang Roar.”
That was a sentiment echoed by AFF secretary-general Azzuddin Ahmad, who agrees that reasonable ticket prices will fill the stadium.
“As hosts, the FAS decides on the ticket prices, not the AFF, but I trust they know best what is affordable and fair for the average Singaporean,” said Azzuddin. “When Malaysia co-hosted the tournament in 2012, we set the cheapest tickets at RM10 (S$4) each. I recognise that the cost of living in Singapore could be higher, and we had an 80,000-seat stadium to fill as well.”
Zainudin Nordin, president of the FAS, is on the same page. “Affordable ticket prices and packed stadiums. That’s the way to go,” he said.
But he also cautioned against underselling the event. “We all know the high cost of rentals at the new National Stadium. Even after the discounts given by the SportsHub, it is still expensive.”
Akbar Hashim, who has been organising sports tours for Singapore fans for the past 25 years, thinks the Suzuki Cup is the ideal platform for bringing back the Kallang Roar.
However, the 52-year-old warned: “Get the ticket prices right, don’t scare away the fans by putting too high a price. For me, the ideal price would be S$12 for the seats behind the goals; S$15 for the gallery and S$20 for the grandstand. At that level, I am confident there would be a healthy turnout. If Singapore keeps winning, the FAS is in for a bonanza.
“I agree with Zainudin that it is expensive to rent the new National Stadium, but then again, it is a world-class structure and very nice to look at.”
COMMENT - the problem with the use of words such as affordable and comfortable is who do they apply to. Arsenal no doubt think their tickets are affordable because they sell out every game but it doesn't take into account sacrifices people make in other areas to follow their favourite team.
The prices quoted by Akbar seem reasonable to me which probably means the FAS will go in at a much higher peg. Mind you, he then blots hos copybook with the final sentence!


 

Persik Move To Malang

Today's Indonesia Super League clash between Persik and Arema has been switched to the Gajayana Stadium in Malang after police in Kediri refused to issue security clearance for the game to go ahead there.

There has been a history of trouble between the two sets of supporters and with Arema top of the western group it was feared large numbers would have made the relatively short journey which could have created problems.

Despite being the home team, Persik can rely on a large Arema support at the stadium to do their best to put them off. It is thought some of their fans will make the trip but with the Gajayana most definitely in Arema turf any travelling supporters will struggle to make themselves heard.

Arema are already assured of a place in the ISL play offs while Persik are struggling to avoid the drop.

 

AFF Cup 2014 Qualifying Round

Qualifying Competition
Vientiane,  Laos
12 – 20 October 2014
TEAMS: Timor Leste, Brunei, Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar

DATE
No.
Match
Time
Venue
Result
12 Oct 2014
1
Timor Leste
vs
 Brunei
National Stadium
2
Laos
vs
 Cambodia
National Stadium
R E S T   D A Y
14 Oct 2014
3
Brunei
vs
 Laos
National Stadium
4
Myanmar
vs
 Timor Leste
National Stadium
R E S T   D A Y
16 Oct 2014
5
Timor Leste
vs
 Cambodia
National Stadium
6
Brunei
vs
 Myanmar
National Stadium
R E S T   D A Y
18 Oct 2014
7
Cambodia
vs
 Myanmar
National Stadium
8
Laos
vs
 Timor Leste
National Stadium
R E S T  D A Y
20 Oct 2014
9
Myanmar
vs
 Laos
National Stadium
10
Cambodia
vs
 Brunei
National Stadium

 

Myanmar Triumph In Brunei

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN (24 August 2014) – An emphatic 4-3 win over Vietnam gave Myanmar the Hassanal Bolkiah Trophy (HBT) 2014 crown in the final that was played at the Hassanal Bolkiah National Stadium in Berakas.
“We deserved the 4-3 win as we had more ball possession and we created many chances in the game but Vietnam were dangerous every time we made a mistake but we were one goal better,” said Myanmar coach Zerd Geise.
“We came here to prepare for the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) tournament in October but whenever we are on the pitch we always want to win.
“It was a great final and I must say I appreciate the Vietnam team. They have fantastic individual football players, but we have our individual (stars) as well.”
Myo Ko Tun scored the first of his two goals in the 16th minute when he capitalised on a mistake from Vietnam goalkeeper Lee Van Truong.
articles230814FA_HM_HBTFINAL-20.transformed
Vietnam equalised in the 38th minute when an ummarked Phan Van Long had all the time in the world to blast the ball in from the edge of the penalty box.
Myanmar goalkeeper Myo Min Latt was beaten again just three minutes after the restart off a brilliant Ho Tuan Tai solo effort as Vietnam out their noses in front for the first time in the game.
But two goals from Ko Tun (58th minute) and then Maung Maung Soe (60th) regained the lead for Myanmar as Vietnam then regrouped for Player of the Tournament Nguyen Chong Phuong to slot home to put the score on 3-3.
As Vietnam were all eager for the equaliser, it was Aung Thu who emerged as the hero for Myanmar when he fired in the winner from 30 metres out.
COMMENT - Indonesia sent their Under 19s and they lost three games, an unusual concurrence for them, drew one and defeated Singapore 6-0. 
They lost 3-1 to Brunei, 3-1 to Vietnam and 2-1 to Cambodia while drawing with Malaysia. No doubt everyone will now be called for coach Indra to be sacked!

 

Division One Play Offs

We are now at the latest play off stage in Division One with 12 teams battling to go through to the next round.

The games will be played on 30/08, 01/09 and 03/09 in Yogyakarta.

Image comes from wherever it says on the watermark!

 

Rams To The Slaughter

Former Blackburn Rovers coach Steve Kean saw his DPMM charges romp to an 8-1 victory over Woodlands Wellington last night in Brunei but he wasn't surprised.

'The boys (have) looked fresh and sharp (in training over the last dew days). If not for the fantastic goalkeeping, it could have been double figures,' Kean said after the match as quoted on the SLeague site.

Goals from Roberto Alviz, Adi Said (2), Roy O'Donovan (2), Azwan Rahman, Boris Raspudic and the prolific Rodrigo Antonio Tosi did the damage while Soon Ho Moon's goal on 58 minutes may have earned him a small bonus in his wage packet.

Tosi and O'Donovan have 33 goals between them with the Brazilian the joint top scorer in the league on 19.

The win does wonders for DPMM's goal difference of course, 55-21, and puts them four points clear of champions Tampines but leaves the Rams in 10th place on 19 points.

It is the third time this season the hapless Woodlands have been on the wrong side of a caning...earlier in the season I saw them cave in at Albirex Niigata, losing 7-1 while they also lost at home to Home United 6-1 last month in the League Cup.

It is fortunate for them the development teams, Young Lions and Harimau Muda, are in an even worse situation; in their last eight games, they have won just once, at home to Warriors, and lost six.

Their next game comes at home to Harimau Muda...

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

 

Persipura v Kuwait SC

We could say the hard work had been done in the 1st leg when Persipura had come away with two away goals. As it happened, they weren't needed as the Black Pearls mullared the holders at their own Mandala Stadium with Robertinho, who hit a hat trick, at the heart of their performance.

Kuwait SC are no mugs. They have won the AFC Cup on three occasions (2009, 2012, 2013) and were runners up in 2011 yet Persipura pushed them aside though to be fair you can't help but feel disappointed with the visitors and wonder if they had done their homework on their hosts.

Once Kuwait had pulled a goal back there was surely an opportunity to get at the Black Pearls. By that I mean get in their faces, rile them, go for the jugular. A second goal would have had Persipura living a bit on their nerves, knowing a third goal would have given the Kuwaitis the lead on away goals.

Credit to the Indonesian champions though. They steamed down the other end of the field and restored parity almost immediately and it was the Kuwaitis who were getting riled.

6-1 on the day, an impressive 8-4 on aggregate and Persipura go through to the semis where they face more opponents from the middle east. Another good showing over there could set them up nicely for a first ever final appearance.





 

Former Perak Player Dies In Algeria

ALGIERS (Reuters) - Algeria have suspended all football this weekend in memory of Albert Ebosse, the striker killed on Saturday after being struck by an object thrown from the crowd during a Ligue 1 match in the north African country.
The Algerian Football Federation said in a statement it was considering several punitive measures including expelling Ebosse’s club JS Kabylie from all competitions. It did not specify a time period.
The Cameroon forward was struck on the head by an object allegedly thrown from a section of his club's own fans as the players left the field at the end of a 2-1 defeat to USM Alger in Tizi Ouzou, a match in which he had scored his side's goal.
JS Kabylie confirmed in a statement posted on the club's website that he had passed away in hospital later on Saturday, though they did not give the exact cause of death.
The federation said the decision to cancel all matches this weekend was also to protest “the irresponsible action of fanatics and hooligans who perpetuate violence in stadiums which has reached unacceptable proportions”.
The federation and JS Kabylie said an immediate sum of $100,000 had been given to Ebosse’s family and the remainder of his contract would also be paid out.
The 24-year-old Ebosse was the leading scorer in the Algerian league in the 2013-14 season with 17 goals having played the previous season in Malaysia.
The world players' union FIFPro said the incident was a reflection on the poor management of football in Africa.
"In recent years, we have constantly had to denounce the flagrant lack of professionalism among African executives," said Stephane Burchkalter, general secretary of FIFPro's African division.
"On the one hand, they demand more and more of the players, in terms of investment. In plain terms, players have to be beyond reproach. If they make the slightest mistake, they are criticised and penalised.
"On the other hand, the executives are allowed to do as they wish, without the least professionalism. They can 'forget' to pay wages, or play with the lives of players by organising competitions without providing the most elementary safety precautions.
"If drastic measures are not taken to preserve the safety of footballers, in Algeria as well as in a great number of other African countries, other incidents are unfortunately to be feared.
"In terms of sport, Algeria showed what it was capable of during the last World Cup but that is not enough," he added, referring to Algeria's progress to the last 16 in Brazil.
(Reporting by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town,; additional reporting by Brian Homewood in Berne, editing by Justin Palmer and Pritha Sarkar)

 

Divisi Utama Play Offs

Group J: Pro Duta, Persikabo, PSCS, PSIS
2 September Pro Duta vs PSCS, Persikabo vs PSIS
6 SeptemberPSCS vs Persikabo, PSIS vs Pro Duta
10 SeptemberPersikabo vs Pro Duta, PSIS vs PSCS
16 SeptemberPro Duta vs Persikabo, PSCS vs PSIS
20 SeptemberPersikabo vs PSCS, Pro Duta vs PSIS
24 SeptemberPSCS vs Pro Duta, PSIS vs Persikabo

Group K : PSPS, PS Bangka, PSGC, Persis
2 September PSPS vs PSGC, PS Bangka vs Persis
6 SeptemberPSGC vs PS Bangka, Persis vs PSPS
10 SeptemberPS Bangka vs PSPS, Persis vs PSGC
16 SeptemberPSPS vs PS Bangka, PSGC vs Persis
20 SeptemberPS Bangka vs PSGC, PSPS vs Persis
24 SeptemberPSGC vs PSPS, Persis vs PS BAngka

Group L : PSS, Martapura FC, Persewangi, runner-up grup 8
2 September PSS vs Persewangi, Martapura FC vs ru8
6 SeptemberPersewangi vs Martapura FC, Ru8 vs PSS
10 SeptemberMartapura FC vs PSS, Ru8 vs Persewangi
16 SeptemberPSS vs Martapura FC, Persewangi vs RU8
20 SeptemberMartapura FC vs Persewangi, PSS vs RU8
24 SeptemberPersewangi vs PSS, Ru8 vs Martapura FC

Group M : Persinga, Borneo FC, Persebo, Persiwa
2 September Persinga vs Persebo, Borneo FC vs Persiwa
6 SeptemberPersebo vs Borneo FC, Persiwa vs Persinga
10 SeptemberBorneo FC vs Persinga, Persiwa vs Persebo
16 SeptemberPersinga vs Borneo FC, Persebo vs Persiwa
20 SeptemberBorneo FC vs Persebo, Persinga vs Persiwa
24 SeptemberPersebo vs Persinga, Persiwa vs Borneo FC

Group 8 is still mired in some confusion regarding the runners up. Apparently, Persewon didn't turn up for their final home game which was a bit daft!
The last plan I heard was just two teams would be promoted to the ISL for next season from the play offs.

Strong representation from Cetral Java and Yogyakarta; Persinga, Persis, PSIS, PSCS and PSS. And xome of them have the potential to pull big crowds!

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