Qiu, Yasir hand Home cup advantage over Loyola

Home United claimed a comfortable aggregate lead over Loyola Meralco Sparks in the Singapore Cup quarter-finals after recording a 2-0 win in Monday’s first leg.

Following a goalless first half at the Bishan Stadium, the Protectors took the lead in the 61st minute after a costly error from Baba Sampana saw him give away possession just outside his own box to Lee Kwan-woo, who played the ball into the box to leave Qiu Li with a simple finish into the back of the net.

And four minutes later, they went on to make sure of the victory after Sirina Camara raced onto Qiu’s incisive pass and hit the byline before cutting the ball back to Yasir Hanapi, who made no mistake in sending a sublime first-time effort past Baba Sampana.

The Sparks did have their fair share of chances but were ultimately unable to find a way past Shahril Jantan, who did make a stunning save shortly after the break to prevent James Younghusband’s glancing header from finding the bottom corner.

The result leaves Home with a healthy advantage ahead of Thursday’s second leg at the Jalan Besar Stadium.

Home United: Shahril Jantan, Masrezwan Masturi, Precious Emuejeraye, Song Inyoung, Kwon Dakyung, Yasir Hanapi, Noh Rahman, Juma’at Jantan (Bruno Castanheira 46’), Lee Kwan Woo (Fazrul Nawaz 65’), Sirina Camara, Qiu Li (Indra Sahdan Daud 70’).

Loyola Meralco Sparks: Baba Sampana, Alexandro Elnar, Samuel Bonney, Joaquin Canas, Bongbong Dorlas, Simon Greatwich, Lee Joo Young (Peter Fadrigalan 79’), Robert Canedo (Phil Younghusband 65’), James Younghusband, Mark Hartmann (Paolo Bugas 79’), Graham Caygill.

Buriram maintain pace; two in a row for Chonburi

Buriram United moved one point behind Thai Premier League leaders Muangthong United on Sunday after cruising to a 2-0 win over Ratchaburi at the Dragons Arena.

The Thunder Castle took the lead in the 15th minute when Jakkaphan Kaewprom stabbed home on the rebound inside the six-yard box, after opposition keeper Ukrit Wongmeema could only touch Theerathon Bunmathan’s freekick onto the post and back into the danger area.

On the stroke of halftime, the visitors doubled their advantage after Theerathon floated a brilliant cross into the box to Javier Patino, who made no mistake in guiding his diving header into the back of the net.

Any hopes the hosts had of mounting a second-half comeback were effectively ended in the 58th minute when they had Ekkaluck Thonghkit sent off, allowing Buriram to hold out for the win.

Fourth-placed Chonburi claimed their second straight win in five days after beating Songkhla United 2-0 at the Chonburi Stadium.

Anderson dos Santos had put the Sharks ahead in the 18th minute when he coolly stroked his shot past Nantapol Supathai after a loose ball had fallen into his path.

And eight minutes from time, the hosts went on to wrap up the three points as Nurul Sriyankem added a second; receiving possession inside the box before clinically drilling his shot into the bottom corner.

Meanwhile, Chiangrai United’s rise up the table continued as they climbed up to fifth with a 2-0 triumph over Songkhla United at the United Stadium.

Renan Marques fired them in front on the half-hour mark when he converted from the penalty spot, before making sure of the result in the second minute of injury-time with his second of the evening.

Over at the Sri Nakhon Lamduan Stadium, Bangkok United made it two wins in a row after defeating Sisaket 3-1.

Mika Chunuonsee headed home from a corner to hand the visitors a 17th-minute lead, but Sisaket equalised just three minutes later when Sarayuth Chaikamdee broke free inside the box and lashed a shot past Pisan Dorkmaikaew.

However, Bangkok United did manage to reclaim the lead two minutes before the hour mark when Kalifa Cisse netted with an acrobatic volley on the rebound, after Romain Gasmi’s initial freekick had come back off the bar.

And they made sure of the three points in injury-time when Noppol Pitfai broke free down the left and floated in an inch-perfect cross to leave Ronnachai Rangsiyo with a simple tap-in at the back post.

Finally, Army United’s dreadful form continued as they played out a 1-1 draw with Chainat at the Thai Army Sports Stadium.

It initially looked as though Army were headed for their first victory in seven games after Goran Jerkovic handed them the lead after eight minutes.

But three minutes before halftime, Phanuwat Jinta equalised to earn the visitors a share of the spoils and leave their opponents with just two wins in their last 13 outings.

 Sunday’s Thai Premier League Results

Ratchaburi 0-2 Buriram United

Sisaket 1-3 Bangkok United

Chiangrai United 2-0 PTT Rayong

Chonburi 2-0 Songkhla United

Army United 1-1 Chainat

DPMM edge Albirex in seven-goal cup thriller

DPMM FC claimed a slim advantage in their Singapore Cup quarter-final clash against Albirex Niigata (S) after recording a 4-3 win in Sunday’s first leg.

It took the Bruneian outfit just five minutes to open the scoring when Roberto Alviz found the back of the net, before Roy O’Donovan made it 2-0 three minutes later.

It then looked as though a rout was on the cards when Rodrigo Tosi added a third for the visitors in the 17th minute, although Albirex did manage to pull one back four minutes after the half-hour mark through a Kazuya Okazaki strike.

The White Swans then further reduced the deficit in the 56th minute when Keisuke Ota struck, before they remarkably pulled level seven minutes later as Kazuki Sakamoto fired home the equaliser.

But just when it looked as though both sides were about to settle for a draw, O’Donovan popped up in injury-time and netted the winner for DPMM to hand them the advantage ahead of next Friday’s second leg.

Albirex Niigata (S): Kenjiro Ogino, Kento Fujihara, Soichiro Tanaka, Norihiro Kawakami, Itsuki Yamada, Koki Akasaka (Shuhei Hotta 84’), Kosuke Matsuda, Keisuke Ota, Kazuya Okazaki, Kento Nagasaki (Kazuya Fukuzaki 88’), Kazuki Sakamoto.

DPMM FC: Wardun Yussof, Joe Gamble, Abdul Aziz Tamit, Boris Raspudic, Azwan Saleh (Sairol Sahari 80’), Awangku Fakharazzi (Adi Said 67’), Rosmin Kamis (Hendra Azam 67’), Roberto Alviz, Azwan Ali, Roy O’Donovan, Rodrigo Tosi.

Muangthong stay top as BEC Tero remain unbeaten

Muangthong United remain top of the Thai Premier League on goal difference after claiming a 1-0 win over TOT at the SCG Stadium on Saturday.

The game was not without controversy however as it initially looked as though TOT were about to hold out for a valuable point, after keeping the hosts at bay for most of the match.

But although there it was initially signalled that there were only going to be four minutes to be added on at the end of the match, play was allowed to continue for much longer.

And in the ninth minute of injury-time, Muangthong found the breakthrough when Jay Bothroyd hit the byline before cutting the ball back for Wuttichai Tathong to sweep home at the near post.

However, the visitors were furious as they believed the ball had gone out before Bothroyd had crossed it, and they allowed their frustrations to get the better of them as Suriya Kupalang was handed his marching orders.

Muangthong remain ahead of second-placed BEC Tero Sasana, who continued their unbeaten start to the campaign with a 3-2 triumph over Suphanburi at the Suphanburi Municipality Stadium.

The Fire Dragons had initially taken a ninth-minute lead when Jaturong Pimkoon burst into the box and sent an emphatic strike into the top corner, but it took the hosts a minute to equalise after Robert Cullen latched onto Decha Sa-ardchom’s perfectly-weighted pass and lashed a shot past Todsaporn Sri-reung at the near post.

A minute after the hour mark, BEC Tero managed to reclaim the lead when Sho Shimoji met Rangsan Viwatchaichok’s right-wing freekick with a glancing header into the bottom corner.

And six minutes later, they edged further ahead after Gilbert Koomson raced through down the right before crossing for Naruphol Ar-Romsawa to smash past a hapless Puthasas Boonpok.

Suphanburi did reduce the deficit in the 78th minute when Bireme Diouf netted with a bullet header from close range but they were just unable to pull level, even though their opponents finished with ten men after Adisorn Promrak was sent off in injury-time.

Over at the PAT Stadium, Singhtarua’s four-game winning run was brought to an abrupt half as they played out a 0-0 draw with Osotspa Saraburi.

Meanwhile, Bangkok Glass claimed a much-needed win after beating bottom side Samut Songkhram 2-0 at the Samut Songkhram Stadium.

Goshi Okubo fired the Glass Rabbits ahead a minute after the half-hour mark when he broke free inside the box, before expertly firing a shot into the far corner from a difficult angle.

Nonetheless, the visitors were unable to make sure of the win until a minute from time when Flavien Michelini found space and cut the ball to the edge of the box, where Pravinwat Boonyong proceeded to drill the ball into the back of the net.

In Saturday’s final game, Air Force Central and Police United played out a 1-1 draw at the Thupatemee Stadium.

It was the hosts who drew first blood on the stroke of halftime after Zezinando’s cross picked out the darting run of Thossaphol Yodchan, who got just enough of a touch on the ball to steer the ball into the bottom corner.

Still, Police went on to claim a share of the spoils in the 50th minute when Norihiro Nishi curled home a freekick on the edge of the box, although their evening ended on a sour note after they had Wutthisak Maneesook sent off in injury-time.

Saturday’s Thai Premier League Results

Air Force Central 1-1 Police United

Samut Songkhram 0-2 Bangkok Glass

Suphanburi 2-3 BEC Tero Sasana

Muangthong United 1-0 TOT

Singhtarua 0-0 Osotspa Saraburi

Ten-man Balestier fight back for cup win over Geylang

Balestier Khalsa produced a resilient fightback to claim a 2-1 win over Geylang International in the first leg of their Singapore Cup quarter-final clash on Saturday.

It was the Eagles who took the lead at the Toa Payoh Stadium after just five minutes after Ridhuan Muhammad broke free down the right and played a dangerous cross into the box, where Hafiz Nor proceeded to fire the ball past Zaiful Nizam and in off the bar.

And things got from bad to worse for Balestier eight minutes before halftime when they found themselves reduced to ten men, after Yusiskandar Yusop was shown a straight red for a dangerous challenge on Franco Chivilo.

But they managed to pull level four minutes after the hour mark when they won a penalty after Joaquin Lopez had handled a goal-bound effort inside the area; Goran Ljubojevic stepping up and clinically dispatching his shot from 12 yards.

And in the 77th minute, Kim Min-ho went on to complete the come-from-behind win for the Tigers when he latched onto Ruhaizad Ismail’s freekick and placed his shot into the top corner.

The result handed Balestier the slimmest of advantages ahead of next Wednesday’s return encounter at the Bedok Stadium.

Balestier Khalsa: Zaiful Nizam, Yusiskandar Yusop, Emir Lotinac, Nurullah Hussein, Syed Thaha, Tajeli Salamat, Jonathan Xu (Poh Yi Feng 76’), Zulkiffli Hassim (Ruhaizad Ismail 75’), Park Kang-jin, Kim Min-ho, Goran Ljubojevic (Muhaymin Salim 73’).

Geylang International: Siddiq Durimi, Khairulnizam Jumahat, Kento Fukuda, Yuki Ichikawa, Joaquin Lopez (Jalal 76’), Fabian Kwok, Ridhuan Muhammad, Mustaqim Manzur, Franco Chivilo, Hafiz Nor, Leonel Felice.

Ex-PDRM boss Dollah confirmed as new Malaysia coach

Malaysia’s search for the permanent successor to K. Rajagobal came to an end on Saturday after it was confirmed that Dollah Salleh had been appointed the new coach of the national team.

His appointment was announced by the Football Association of Malaysia (FAM) and ends a six-month hunt for the next Harimau Malaya boss, after Rajagobal departed at the end of 2013 following a disappointing 2015 AFC Asian Cup qualifying campaign.

Prior to Dollah’s appointment, Malaysia Under-23 coach Ong Kim Swee had been handed the reins in a caretaker capacity, although he will now be able to fully devote his attention to his young charges.

The fact that Dollah has been given the nod has raised a few eyebrows given the FAM initially looked determined to appoint a foreign coach, with Philippe Troussier and Zdenek Zeman heavily linked with the vacancy.

But the 50-year-old, who enjoyed legendary status during his playing days, has enjoyed plenty of managerial success in recent years.

In five seasons with Pahang, he led them to promotion to the Malaysia Super League before winning the Malaysia Cup with them last term.

This season, he took charge of PDRM as they booked their place in the top flight after being crowned Premier League champions.

With no qualifiers for the World Cup or Asian Cup on the immediate horizon, Dollah’s first major test will come at the end of the year when Harimau Malaya compete for the 2014 AFF Suzuki Cup.

Tampines put one foot in Singapore Cup semi-finals

Tampines Rovers have the advantage over Tanjong Pagar United in the Singapore Cup quarter-finals after claiming a 4-2 win in Friday’s first leg at the Jalan Besar Stadium.

It was the Stags who drew first blood when they took the lead four minutes before the half-hour mark after Jozef Kaplan unselfishly played Shahdan Sulaiman’s lovely floated pass into the path of Miljan Mrdakovic, who burst past the onrushing Aurelien Herisson before firing into the unguarded net.

But on the stroke of halftime, Tanjong Pagar equalised after Monsef Zerka found space down the left and drilled in a low cross that Firdaus Idros cleverly touched into the bottom corner.

Tampines did manage to reclaim the lead nine minutes into the second half when Mrdakovic ran onto an incisive pass by Ismadi Mukhtar and drilled in a low shot that was initially parried by Herisson, although Jamil Ali caught Ruzaini Zainal unaware and nipped in ahead of him to poke the rebound over the line.

Again, the Jaguars were able to muster a response in the 65th minute when Monsef Zerka coolly sent Justin Pasfield the wrong way from the spot, after Kaplan was adjudged to have tripped Firdaus inside the box.

However, it took Rafi Ali’s charges just four minutes to edge ahead for the third time and it was Jamil who netted once more, running onto Kaplan’s through-pass before sending a sublime first-time lob over Herisson and into the back of the net.

And in the first minute of injury-time, they went on to seal the victory when Kaplan forced his way free inside the box before blasting a low shot home to hand the Stags a two-goal cushion ahead of next Tuesday’s second leg.

Tampines Rovers: Justin Pasfield, Anaz Hadee, Fahrudin Mustafic, Kunihiro Yamashita, Jufri Taha, Jacob Butler, Jozef Kaplan, Shahdan Sulaiman, Jamil Ali (Ang Zhi Wei 87’), Jozef Kaplan, Miljan Mrdakovic (Noh Alam Shah 79’).

Tanjong Pagar United: Aurelien Herisson, Ruzaini Zainal, Ahmad Latiff, Hafiz Osman, Nor Azli Yusoff, Anthony Aymard, Firdaus Idros, Sazali Salleh, Sebastien Etiemble, Monsef Zerka.

Global finish with Stallion rout; Loyola pip Kaya to second

Newly-crowned United Football League champions Global ended their campaign in fine fashion after recording an emphatic 9-0 win over Stallion FC on Thursday evening.

Leigh Manson’s charges were initially leading by just a solitary goal at the break, after Daisuke Sato had opened the scoring in the 34th minute when he fired home on the rebound.

But four minutes into the second half, Raul Martinez doubled their lead with a long-range strike before Izzeldin Elhabbib and Mark Hartmann linked up well to carve out an opening for Milad Behgandom to finish four minutes after the hour mark.

Elhabbib then got a goal of his own in the 72nd minute with a towering header and turned provider for Behgandom’s second a minute later, before Hartmann got in on the act to make it 6-0.

Hartmann then doubled his tally two minutes from the end but the star of the evening was Elhabbib, who netted twice more in injury-time to complete his hat-trick and wrap up an astounding win for Global.

In Thursday’s earlier game, Loyola Meralco Sparks sealed a runners-up finish after beating Kaya 3-2.

Arnel Amita nodded the Sparks ahead after 16 minutes, before Freddy Gonzalez doubled their the lead eight minutes after the hour mark when he beat Nick O’Donnell in a one-on-one situation.

Thomas Taylor did manage to pull one back for Kaya nine minutes from time and remarkably, they equalised two minutes later when Pablo Rodriguez found the back of the net.

Nonetheless, Joaquin Canas popped up in the third minute of injury-time and scored with a looping header to win it for Loyola.

Thursday’s United Football League Results

Kaya 2-3 Loyola Meralco Sparks

Global 9-0 Stallion FC

Darul Ta’zim pip Selangor to Malaysia Super League crown

Johor Darul Ta’zim were crowned champions of the Malaysia Super League on Wednesday after claiming a 1-0 win over Sarawak at the Sarawak State Stadium.

Entering the clash with a slender one-point lead at the top of the table, it looked as though Harimau Selatan were in danger of slipping up as they struggled to find their rhythm in the opening 45, with Sarawak looking the livelier of the two teams.

But six minutes after the hour mark, the winner arrived when Jorge Pereyra Diaz pounced on a loose ball and burst into the box, before lifting his shot over the onrushing Sani Anuar Kamsani .

In the end, a draw would also have been enough to hand JDT the title given the fact that second-placed Selangor could only manage a 2-2 draw against already-relegated PKNS FC.

Paulo Rangel netted eight minutes before the half-hour mark to hand the Red Giants the lead, but Patrick Ronaldinho Wleh equalised for PKNS in the 66th minute.

Although it took Selangor just two minutes to reclaim the lead when Rangel grabbed his second of the evening, Kim Dong-chen forced the draw eight minutes from time after his side had been awarded a penalty.

At the other end of the table, it was T-Team who will follow PKNS down to the Premier League next season after they were beaten 1-0 by LIONSXII.

Following a goalless first half at the Sultan Ismail Nasiruddin Shah Stadium, the Titans were handed a real blow in the 58th minute when goalkeeper Shahril Saa’ri was sent off for a last-man foul on Sufian Anuar.

And eight minutes later, the visitors went on to claim all three points after Sufian and Khairul Amri combined well to create an opening for Faris Ramli, who coolly stroked the ball past Wan Azraei Wan Teh into the bottom corner.

ATM were the beneficiaries of T-Team’s relegation as they finished above them solely on goal difference following a 1-1 draw with Sime Darby.

It was the Armed Forces who took the lead at the Majlis Perbandaran Selayang Stadium when Bruno Martelotto converted from the spot in the 33rd minute, but Mahmoud Amnah netted four minutes into the second half to force the draw.

Perak were another team who entered Wednesday’s final round of matches uncertain of their top-flight status, although they emphatically secured their place in the Super League with a 3-0 win over third-placed Pahang.

Milan Purovic broke the deadlock at the Perak Stadium from the penalty spot in the 22nd minute, before doubling his and his side’s tally just three minutes later.

Nine minutes after the hour mark, the contest was effectively over when Abdulafees Abdulsalam added a third for the hosts to wrap up maximum points.

Finally, Terengganu sealed a top-four finish after producing a stunning comeback to claim a 3-2 win over rivals Kelantan in the East Coast Derby.

Kelantan were initially cruising to victory at the Sultan Mohammad IV Stadium when Ahmad Fakri Saarani handed them a fourth-minute lead, before Khairul Izuan Rosli made it 2-0 three minutes before the half-hour mark.

Nonetheless, Terengganu pulled one back in the 73rd minute through a strike from Abdul Manaf Mamat, who netted again six minutes later to level the scores.

And nine minutes from time, ex-Kelantan star Norfarhan Muhammad came back to haunt his former side as he struck the winner to hand the Turtles the derby spoils.

Wednesday’s Malaysia Super League Results

ATM 1-1 Sime Darby

Kelantan 2-3 Terengganu


Perak 3-0 Pahang

Selangor 2-2 PKNS FC

Sarawak 0-1 Johor Darul Ta’zim

BEC Tero pull level with Muangthong; Buriram close in

BEC Tero Sasana moved level on points with Thai Premier League leaders Muangthong United on Wednesday after claiming a 2-0 win over Samut Songkhram.

Chanathip Songkrasin fired the Fire Dragons ahead at the 72-years Anniversary Stadium three minutes before halftime with his second goal in as many games, before Sho Shimoji netted in the 52nd minute to wrap up the three points.

The game did end on a sour note as BEC Tero striker Georgie Welcome and Raging Mackerel’s Pongpipat Kamnuan were both dismissed in the 79th minute, before the visitors were reduced to nine men when Thanathep Jiaradub saw red after picking up two bookings in the span of five minutes.

Muangthong had failed to maintain two-point lead at the top of the table after being held to a 0-0 draw by Chainat at the SCG Stadium.

Meanwhile, Buriram United are just a point behind the top two after recording a 3-2 win over Songkhla United at the Tinsulanon Stadium.

The Thunder Castle took the lead in the 33rd minute when Carmelo Gonzalez met a loose ball with a blistering half-volley into the back of the net, before it was 2-0 six minutes later when Nattawut Sombatyotha got enough of a touch on Anawin Jujeen’s right-wing cross to send the ball over the line.

But Faysal Shayesteh pulled one back for Songkhla in the 43rd minute when he curled a spectacular 20-yard freekick into the top corner, and the scores were level on the stroke of halftime after Ekkachai Nuikhao raced through down the right and drilled in a shot that Sivaruck Tedsungnoen was unable to keep out.

However, Buriram went on to claim maximum points in the 76th minute when Javier Patino reacted instinctively to Andres Tunez’s flick-on header and sent the ball past Nantapol Supathai with an acrobatic volley.

Over at the Thammasat Stadium, Chonburi ended a three-game winless streak after beating Police United 3-2.

Having taken a 14th-minute lead when Nurul Sriyankem netted from close range after Rattanai Songsangchan had parried the ball into his path, the Sharks found themselves in a commanding position as Kazuto Kushida doubled their advantage a minute later with a fine individual effort.

Nonetheless, Sergio Suarez did reduce the deficit in the 35th minute when he scored on the rebound after his initial header had come back off the bar, before Pokkhao Anan made it 2-2 with a spectacular 25-yard drive past Sinthaweechai Hathairattanakool’s despairing dive a minute before the hour mark.

Still, it was Chonburi who went on to secure the win in the 70th minute when Thiago Cunha latched onto Fode Bangaly Diakite’s clearance header and raced through before clipping a shot home.

Singhtarua find themselves fifth on the table after coming from behind to beat PTT Rayong 2-1 at the PTT Stadium.

Amorn Thammanarm had handed the hosts the lead in the 52nd minute with a tap-in at the back post after Kirati Keawsombat had helped Amadou Ouattara’s cross into his path, but they then had Yves Desmarets sent off ten minutes later for a second bookable offence.

And Singhtarua made the most of their numerical advantage as Sirichai Lamputtha equalised six minutes from time with a looping header into the far corner, before Kim Geun-chul lashed a left-footed strike in off the bar in the 90th minute to win it for the visitors.

Inconsistency continues to plague Bangkok Glass as they fell to their fourth defeat in eight games after being beaten 2-0 by high-flying Chiangrai United.

Following a goalless first half at the Leo Stadium, the visitors took the lead in the 66th minute when Renan Marques blasted the ball past Narit Taweekul after their opponents had failed to clear their lines from a corner.

And ten minutes later, the result was put beyond doubt as Chiangrai grabbed a second on the counter; Leandro Assumpcao breaking down the right before clinically firing into the bottom corner.

Elsewhere, Victor Amaro’s thumping header in the first minute of injury-time handed Sisaket a 1-0 triumph over Osotspa Saraburi, while Ratchaburi defeated Suphanburi 3-0 thanks to Heberty’s brace and a Phuwadol Suwannachart strike.

Finally, Air Force Central’s struggles continued as they were beaten 2-1 by TOT, while goals from Kim Yoo-jin, Sompong Soleb and Paitoon Nontadee helped Bangkok United record an impressive 3-0 win over Army United at the Thai-Japanese Stadium.

Wednesday’s Thai Premier League Results

Chainat 0-0 Muangthong United

Osotspa Saraburi 0-1 Sisaket

Songkhla United 2-3 Buriram United

Bangkok Glass 0-2 Chiangrai United

Police United 2-3 Chonburi

PTT Rayong 1-2 Singhtarua

Ratchaburi 3-0 Suphanburi

TOT 2-1 Air Force Central

Bangkok United 3-0 Army United

BEC Tero Sasana 2-0 Samut Songkhram