Home run over champs DPMM
Protectors issue title warning as they put champions to the sword
HOME UNITED 5
(Azhar Sairudin 10, Faris Ramli 39, Ken Ilso 71, 73, Syahiran Miswan 85)
BRUNEI DPMM 0
In a superb performance last night, Home United hit five past defending champions Brunei DPMM, and duly delivered a chilling message to their rivals in the Great Eastern-Yeo's S.League.
"We can get even better... we can score more," said Protectors coach, Philippe Aw.
It was hardly a boast, or some attempt at mind games.
Anyone of the 1,900 who turned up at the Bishan Stadium would have vouched for the fact that Home were hardly flattered by the scoreline.
After Home goalkeeper Zulfairuuz Rudy made a good save to foil Shahrazen Said within the first 60 seconds, it was all Home.
Playmaker Azhar Sairudin once again staked his claim for a place in the national team when he beat two players before floating the ball past Wardun Yussof in the 10th minute.
The hosts then executed the best team goal so far this season six minutes before the break with a brilliant counter-attack off a DPMM corner.
Tough-as-nails centre back Abdil Qaiyyim headed the ball out left to Faris Ramli, who relayed it to Sirina Camara and carried on running.
The French left back passed it to Song Ui Young who switched play beautifully from left to right, finding Shamil Sharif, whose first-time pass into the box was converted by Faris.
"It was a lightning counter which we talked about and practised, and it's great to see it happen in a match," said Aw.
His counterpart, Steve Kean, on the other hand, was left fuming as his side looked nothing like defending champions.
Instead, they capitulated in the second half, allowing the effervescent Ken Ilso to grab a quick-fire double in the 71st and 73rd minutes, before substitute Syahiran Miswan completed the scoring five minutes from time.
"I'm shocked because I didn't think we had this kind of bad performance in us," said Kean, who refused to surrender the title despite his team lying in fifth with 18 points from 13 games.
"I'm bitterly disappointed because it was definitely the worst result and performance.
"It's pointless being amazing only in training but there will be no time-off because we have too much to work on.
"The title defence is not over, though. There are still 33 points to play for and we will be the hardest-working team from now."
While Kean and his team go back to basics, Aw and Home can dream of bigger things as they strengthened their hold on third place, five points behind leaders Albirex Niigata, who have a game in hand.
"We want to challenge for the title and a place in the AFC Cup but many things can still happen in the season, so our target remains the top three," said Aw.
"After winning four in a row, the cup and international break coming up is rather untimely for us, but we will try to carry our good form into the RHB Singapore Cup next week."
- HOME UNITED: Zulfairuuz Rudy, Juma’at Jantan (Redzwan Atan 19), Shahrin Saberin, Abdil Qaiyyim, Sirina Camara, Shamil Sharif, Song Ui Young, Aqhari Abdullah (Syahiran Miswan 68), Azhar Sairudin (Sufianto Salleh 78), Faris Ramli, Ken Ilso
- BRUNEI DPMM: Wardun Yussof, Helmi Zambin (Awangku Fakharrazi 60), Yura Indera Putera, Brian McLean, Najib Tarif, Maududi Kasmi (Hendra Azam 46), Rosmin Kamis, Azwan Ali (Adi Said 46), Azwan Salleh, Rafael Ramazotti, Shahrazen Said
- TNP MAN OF THE MATCH: Ken Ilso (Home United)
LAST NIGHT’S OTHER RESULT
- Hougang United 1 Garena Young Lions 1
- Warriors FC v Balestier Khalsa (7.30pm, Choa Chu Kang Stadium)
- Albirex Niigata v Geylang International (7.45pm, Jalan Besar Stadium)