Albirex fight back to beat DPMM FC
| Jake Ten |
DPMM FC were outclassed by an on-song Albirex Niigata FC side, who continued their 100percent start to the 2013 Great Eastern Yeo’s S League season with a 2-1 win at the Jurong East Stadium in Singapore last night.
A minute’s silence was observed before the game for the 2nd anniversary of the Japan tsunami disaster, which claimed nearly 19,000 lives, including 2,300 who died due to stresses of life living in evacuation centres or temporary housing.
Shahrulrizal Rahman was called up to the starting 11 following Pg Salehuddin Damit’s red card against Courts Young Lions last week, whilst Hendra Azam was also a surprise inclusion, the 24-year old getting the nod ahead of HBT teammate, Adi Said, on this occasion.
Albirex were quick to find their rhythm, with former Urawa Red Diamond player, Shingo Suzuki, pulling the strings in the centre of the park, but it was White Swans goalkeeper, Hiroaki Hara, who had to be on his toes to deny Joao Moreira and Helmi Zambin in quick succession.
DPMM FC were making the most of what possession they had, and skipper Rosmin Kamis almost forced an opening in the 16th minute when he spotted Shahrazen Said, who cleverly flicked the ball over his marker before blasting wide.
They were rewarded for their efforts just before the half hour mark, when Hiroaki Hara failed to come for a corner, flapping at the ball hopelessly as Shahrazen Said fired home his fourth goal, his first without the use of his head, in as many games.
Albirex Niigata have made a name for themselves this season for scoring screamers, with all but one of their goals coming from positions outside the box, and the Japanese satellite team drew level on the stroke of half time.
Captain Shuhei Hotta did well to dispossess Stephane Auvray, before laying the ball into the path of Kazuki Sakamoto. The striker picked out Kento Nagasaki, who curled a shot into the bottom corner of Wardun Yussof’s goal.
The White Swans picked up the baton in the second half, and to their credit took the lead through Kazuki Sakamoto, who lashed home in the 59th minute after naturalized Brazilian Bruno Castanheira’s flick on from a corner.
With his charges now chasing the game and in desperate need of some attacking impetus, DPMM FC head coach Vjeran Simunic replaced Hendra Azam with Adi Said, before deciding Joao Moreira’s time was up, and in his place came the ever enthusiastic Awangku Fakharazzi.
The substitutes made little impression on the game as Albirex remained in control of the proceedings, and held on for their fourth win in four games to remain atop the S League standings.