Albirex run rampant in 5-1 win over Tampines
Albirex rampant with five goals as they take commanding lead in first leg of q-final tie
|TAMPINES ROVERS||ALBIREX NIIGATA|
|(Shahdan Sulaiman 90-pen)||(Kento Nagasaki 26, 59, Rui Kumada 33, Shoma Kondo 83, Shoichiro Sakamoto 84)|
Six chances, five goals.
Defending RHB Singapore Cup champions Albirex Niigata dished out a lesson in finishing to Tampines Rovers as they ran rampant at the Stags' home ground - Our Tampines Hub - in the first leg of their quarter-final tie last night.
After the 5-1 loss, Tampines' head coach Juergen Raab rued his side's profligacy in front of goal.
"Albirex are very dangerous, and my defenders know it. They are 100 per cent effective in making full use of their chances," said the German.
"Out of six chances, five goals. Albirex were very effective today and, in every situation, they took shots.
"In the second half, we could have scored two or three goals, but we were just unable to put the ball across the line.
"At the end of it, it was a question of quality.
"We worked really hard today and created good chances, but we walked away with only one goal.
We worked really hard today and created good chances, but we walked away with only one goal. The scoreline is not a reflection of the quality of the team.”Tampines Rovers coach Juergen Raab
"The scoreline is not a reflection of the quality of the team."
Tampines nearly got off to a perfect start after 40 seconds when striker Fazrul Nawaz narrowly missed out on a pin-point cross by Irwan Shah.
The Stags came close again to drawing first blood as Ryutaro Megumi tore through the right wing in the 26th minute, but his effort came to naught.
It was Albirex who drew first blood in the 26th minute when Kento Nagasaki's powerful shot from a Hiroyoshi Kamata cut-back flew past Tampines goalkeeper Izwan Mahbud.
The Japanese outfit struck again seven minutes later as Rui Kumada headed in a Nagasaki cross.
Albirex continued their prolific form in the second half with Nagasaki scoring his second of the night from the edge of the box.
The Stags had a good chance to pull one back in the 77th min ute when Khairul Amri twisted and turned past two defenders to set up Irwan, but the latter could not beat Albirex's veteran custodian Yosuke Nozawa.
Then in a space of two minutes, the White Swans put the result beyond doubt through a spectacular diving header from Shoma Kondo and a clinical finish from Shoichiro Sakamoto.
Tampines scored a consolation goal through Shahdan Sulaiman's spot-kick after Amri was brought down in the box, but it proved too little, too late for the home team, who face an uphill task in the second leg at the Jurong East Stadium on Sunday.
Albirex coach Kazuaki Yoshinaga was pleased with his team's performance, but refused to be lulled into complacency.
He said: "The tie is not finished, it is only the first leg.
"We are happy with the result today, but we are thinking of the second leg and we are going to prepare accordingly.
"I think we were lucky to win 5-1, because Tampines are a very strong team and we were playing on their home ground."