Tampines pull level at the top; Balestier stay in the hunt

Tampines Rovers moved level on points with S.League leaders DPMM FC on Thursday evening after recording a 2-0 win over Woodlands Wellington.

The Stags edged ahead at the Woodlands Stadium two minutes before the half-hour mark when Shahdan Sulaiman found the back of the net, after being picked out by a good pass from Ismadi Mukhtar.

And six minutes from time, they went on to seal the win when Christopher van Huizen came off the bench to score their second of the evening.

The result allowed Tampines to join DPMM on 38 points at the league summit, although the Bruneian outfit have a game in hand and take on Hougang United on Sunday.

In Thursday’s other game, Balestier Khalsa kept alive their hopes of a top-half finish with a hard-fought 2-1 triumph over Geylang International at the Jalan Besar Stadium.

Kim Min-ho fired the Tigers ahead four minutes before halftime when he latched onto Muhaymin Salim’s brilliant over-the-top pass and advanced on goal, before coolly slotting past Joey Sim.

But in the 58th minute, Geylang levelled the scores when Leonel Felice met Mustaqim Manzur’s excellent corner with a firm header that was saved by Zaiful Nizam, although Kento Fukuda was quickest to react and stabbed home the rebound.

Nonetheless, Balestier went on to claim the win ten minutes later after Goran Ljubojevic played a slide-rule pass into the path of substitute Zulkiffli Hassim, who made no mistake in sending an emphatic finish into the back of the net.

Thursday’s S.League Results

Geylang International 1-2 Balestier Khalsa

Woodlands Wellington 0-2 Tampines Rovers

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Buriram, BEC Tero to meet in Thai League Cup final

Buriram United remain on track to win a fourth consecutive Thai League Cup title after progressing to the final with a 3-1 aggregate win over Ratchaburi in the semi-finals.

Entering Wednesday’s clash at the Dragons Arena leading 1-0 from the first leg, Buriram opened the scoring just before the break when Andres Tunez met Theerathon Bunmathan’s freekick and out-jumped opposition keeper Chayoot Nakchamnarn to score with a towering header.

And in the 73rd minute, the contest was effectively over when the Thunder Castle doubled their tally on the night; Suchao Nutnum finding Carmelo Gonzalez at the near post with a corner and the Spaniard coolly sent a looping header into the back of the net.

Ratchaburi did manage to pull one back in the 80th minute when Heberty sent Sivaruck Tedsungnoen the wrong way from the penalty spot, after Suree Sukha had committed a clumsy foul inside the box.

But the visitors were able to hold out for the win, although their evening was marred by ugly scenes six minutes from time when Carmelo was controversially shown a second yellow for kicking a water bottle that was by the sidelines, and had to be restrained by Suchao and team officials as he furiously attempted to confront the referee.

Standing in wait for Buriram in the final are BEC Tero Sasana, who came from behind to beat Nakhon Ratchasima 4-2 at the 5th December Stadium to claim a 5-2 win on aggregate.

It had been the Division 1 League outfit who opened the scoring in the 21st minute when Malek Yawahab cleverly turned Narubodin Weerawatnodom inside the area, before netting with a sublime lob.

And five minutes later, it was 2-0 when Sarawut Janthapan latched onto a clearing punch by Todsaporn Sri-reung with a clinical first-time volley into the back of the unguarded net from all of 25 yards.

However, Korat were dealt a real blow in the 42nd minute when Ivan Boskovic needlessly got himself sent off, and the visitors made it 2-1 on the stroke of halftime as Narubodin poked home a loose ball from a yard out after Radomir Dalovic had helped the ball on into his path.

Three minutes after the hour mark, BEC Tero edged ahead on aggregate once more after Gilbert Koomson beat the offside trap and raced through down the right, before slotting through the legs of Kampol Pathom-attakul.

Still, the Fire Dragons refused to let up and Otman Djellilahine added another in the 72nd minute as he met Rangsan Viwatchachok’s cut-back down the left and lashed a shot into the roof of the net.

The rout was completed seven minutes later when Kampol came off his line but was caught in no man’s land after Koomson’s right-wing cross looped into the air after taking a deflection, allowing Dalovic to nip in and plant a header home.

To add insult to injury, Nakhon Ratchasima finished the game with nine men after Chalermpong Kerdkaew was also handed his marching orders, compounding a miserable day for the hosts that initially promised plenty.

Wednesday’s Thai League Cup Semi-final 2nd Leg Results

Nakhon Ratchasima 2-4 BEC Tero Sasana (2-5 on aggregate)

Ratchaburi 1-2 Buriram United (1-3 on aggregate)

Home rise up to third after controversial Jaguars win

Home United tentatively climbed up to third on the S.League table after claiming a controversial 2-1 win over Tanjong Pagar United at the Queenstown Stadium on Wednesday.

The Protectors edged ahead in the 12th minute when a collision between opposition defenders Nor Azli Yusoff and Anthony Aymard – as they attempted to clear a high ball – allowed the ball to break free to Sirina Camara, who made no mistake in firing a shot into the back of the net with aplomb.

But six minutes later, the hosts equalised after a brilliant bit of play by Tengku Mushadad saw him break free in the middle of the park before delivering an incisive through-pass to Sebastien Etiemble; the Frenchman clinically guiding his shot past the onrushing Shahril Jantan.

Tanjong Pagar were then dealt a blow in the 76th minute when Kamel Ramdani was questionably shown a straight red by referee Sukhbir Singh, even though his trip on Yasir Hanapi was merely cynical but far from vicious or with malicious intent.

Nonetheless, parity was restored two minutes later when Yasir too was sent off after being issued a second yellow, after a blatant tug-back on Sazali Salleh.

Remarakably, a third player was then sent off in the 81st minute when Monsef Zerka was also shown a straight red, even though it was not immediately apparent what his offence had been.

And three minutes from time, Home went on to claim all three points after Bruno Castanheira found a yard of space inside the box, and proceeded to squeeze his shot into the bottom corner.

The victory allowed the Protectors to move four points behind leaders DPMM and they are currently level on 34 points with fourth-placed Warriors FC, although they are ahead on goal difference.

Tanjong Pagar United: Aurelien Herisson, Nor Azli Yusoff, Anthony Aymard, Hafiz Osman, Asraf Rashid (Zahid Ahmad 70’), Tengku Mushadad (Sazali Salleh 72’), Kamel Ramdani, Ahmad Latiff, Sebastien Etiemble, Firdaus Idros, Monsef Zerka.

Home United: Shahril Jantan, Masrezwan Masturi (Indra Sahdan Daud 88’), Song In-young, Kwon Da-kyung, Juma’at Jantan, Yasir Hanapi, Noh Rahman, Bruno Castanheira (Fazli Ayob 88’), Lee Kwan-woo, Sirina Camara, Qiu Li (Fazrul Nawaz 60’).

Chainat down PTT Rayong to make it three in a row

Chainat stretched their unbeaten run in the Thai Premier League to five matches after beating PTT Rayong 2-0 to claim their third consecutive win on Wednesday.

The game at the Khao Plong Stadium was a rearranged fixture after being originally scheduled in the middle of May, and it initially looked as though the Oil Millionaires were going to deny their opponents after holding firm in the first half.

But two minutes after the hour mark, the hosts found the breakthrough after Sumanya Purisay supplied a visionary through-pass to Surachet Ngamtip, who coolly lifted his shot over the onrushing Kritsana Klanklin and in off the post.

And in the 70th minute, Chainat went on to seal the win after Laksana Kamruen broke free at the near post to and met a corner with a looping header into the far corner.

The Hornbills’ recent good form, which includes triumphs over Singhtarua and TOT, means they are now up to 12th on the table and just nine points behind fifth-placed Chiangrai United.

However, things are not looking as good for PTT as they remain second from bottom are eight points away from safety.

Buriram surge ahead after Muangthong, Chonburi denied

Buriram United moved two points clear at the top of the Thai Premier League on Sunday after claiming a 1-0 win over Samut Songkhram at the Samut Songkhram Stadium.

Although the Thunder Castle were expected to comfortably see off their bottom-placed opponents, they came up against stern resistance and failed to find a way past in the opening 45.

But the breakthrough finally arrived two minutes after the hour mark when Anawin Jujeen found space down the right before floating an excellent cross into the box, where Carmelo Gonzalez proceeded to nod the winner into the bottom corner.

The result allowed Buriram to surge ahead after Muangthong United fell to a shock 2-1 loss to Bangkok Glass at the Leo Stadium.

It took the hosts just six minutes to take the lead when Goshi Okubo slid home at the far post to score on the rebound, after Witsanusak Kaewruang could only parry Wasan Homsaen’s low drive into his path.

However, Muangthong did manage to pull level in the 53rd minute after Narit Taweekul had come off his line but failed to gather a corner, allowing Datsakorn Thonglao to fire a volley into the back of the net.

Still, it was the Glass Rabbits who had the last laugh as they went on to claim maximum points eight minutes from time; Darko Tasevski latching onto Blaze Ilijoski’s neat layoff before firing away a shot that was too hot for Kawin Thamsatchanan to handle.

Chonburi, who began the day level on points with both Buriram and Muangthong, also fell off the pace after being held to a 1-1 draw by Chiangrai United at the United Stadium.

Following a goalless first half, Chiangrai took the lead in the 69th minute after Renan Marques found space inside the box and cut the ball back to Keita Sugimoto, who clinically sent a first-time shot into the far corner.

Nonetheless, the Sharks went on to force the draw six minutes later when Nurul Sriyankem pounced on a poor clearance on the edge of the box, and proceeded to send a volley into the back of the net.

BEC Tero Sasana also moved level with Chonburi on 51 points but find themselves third on the table due to their inferior head-to-head record, following a 2-1 win over Army United at the 72-years Anniversary Stadium.

Gilbert Koomson put the Fire Dragons in front four minutes before the half-hour mark when he burst past two defenders on the edge of the box, before drilling in a shot that squirmed under the body of Sarawut Konglarp and over the line.

And in the 61st minute, the hosts doubled their advantage after Chanathip Songkrasin tried his luck from 20 yards with an effort that took a wicked deflection before making its way into the bottom corner.

Army did manage to pull one back five minutes from time when Chainarong Tathong fired home an emphatic drive from the edge of the box but it proved to be a mere consolation, as BEC Tero held out for the win.

In Sunday’s final game, Songkhla United were leading Osotspa Saraburi 1-0 courtesy of Ekkachai Nuikhao’s 15th-minute strike when they game was abandoned at halftime, due to floodlight failure at the Tinsulanon Stadium.

Sunday’s Thai Premier League Results

Samut Songkhram 0-1 Buriram United

Songkhla United 1-0 Osotspa Saraburi (abandoned at halftime due to floodlight failure)

Bangkok Glass 2-1 Muangthong United

Chiangrai United 1-1 Chonburi

BEC Tero Sasana 2-1 Army United

Ha Noi maintain chase as Binh Duong see off Quang Nam

Ha Noi T&T remain a point off the top of the V.League 1 table after claiming a 3-1 win over Hoang Anh Gia Lai at the Hang Day Stadium on Sunday.

Ha Noi were left stunned early on as Felix Ogbuke fired HAGL ahead after just four minutes, although they did manage to pull level through a Hoang Vu Samson strike a minute after the half-hour mark.

Samson then netted again on the stroke of halftime to put the hosts ahead, before completing his hat-trick in the 57th minute and wrapping up the three points in the process.

The victory ensured Ha Noi remain hot on the heels of league leaders Becamex Binh Duong, who cruised to a 3-1 triumph over QNK Quang Nam at the Tam Ky Stadium.

Trinh Quang Vinh handed the visitors a dream start after opening the scoring in the fourth minute, but Quang Nam responded when Nguyen Huu Phuc equalised a minute before the hour mark.

But seven minutes later, Abass Cheikh Dieng restored Binh Duong’s advantage and added a second deep into injury-time to make sure of the win.

Thanh Hoa remain third on the table but now find themselves eight points off the pace after being held to a 0-0 draw by Song Lam Nghe An at the Thanh Hoa Stadium.

Meanwhile, Dong Tam Long An stretched their unbeaten run to three games following a 1-1 draw with Hai Phong at the Lach Tray Stadium.

Things could have been even better for Long An as they drew first blood through Tran Chi Cong’s opener in the 34th minute, but Dao Van Phong struck seven minutes into the second half to earn the hosts a share of the spoils.

At the bottom of the table, Hung Vuong An Giang are almost certain to be in the promotion-relegation playoffs after a 2-1 loss to Than Quang Ninh at the Long Xuyen Stadium left them six points away from safety.

An Giang were dealt a blow in the 37th minute when they had Felix Ajala sent off for a second bookable offence, but they managed to take the lead when Patiyo Tambwe scored on the stroke of halftime.

However, Uche Iheruome equalised for Quang Ninh in the 56th minute before Sunday Emmanuel netted to put them ahead nine minutes after the hour mark.

The game did finish on a sour note as An Giang’s Nguyen Huy Cuong and Quang Ninh’s Bui Van Sang were both sent off in the 78th minute, allowing the visitors to hold out for maximum points.

In Sunday’s final game, Dong Nai recorded a 2-1 triumph over SHB Da Nang at the Dong Nai Stadium.

Sunday’s V.League 1 Results

Hung Vuong An Giang 1-2 Than Quang Ninh

Dong Nai 2-1 SHB Da Nang

QNK Quang Nam 1-3 Becamex Binh Duong

Ha Noi T&T 3-1 Hoang Anh Gia Lai

Thanh Hoa 0-0 Song Lam Nghe An

Hai Phong 1-1 Dong Tam Long An

MNL leaders Yadanarbon stay four clear with Yangon draw

Yadanarbon remain four points clear at the top of the Myanmar National League after playing out a 2-2 draw with closest challengers Yangon United on Sunday evening.

The Lions had taken the lead at the Yangon United Sports Complex after just four minutes through an Emerson Luiz Tito strike, only for Yan Aung Win to equalise for Yadanarbon in the 28th minute.

Yangon then edged ahead again three minutes before halftime when Yan Aung Kyaw found the back of the net but the visitors refused to be beaten, and forced the draw five minutes before the hour mark when Djedje Maximin fired them level again.

The result allowed Yadanarbon to maintain their four-point lead over Yangon, who are now joined on 28 points by both Nay Pyi Taw and Kanbawza.

Nay Pyi Taw were in action in Sunday’s other game and hardly broke a sweat as they recorded a 3-1 win over bottom side GFA at the Bogyoke Aung San Stadium.

It was Nay Pyi Taw who drew first blood after five minutes through an opener from Pyae Phyo Oo, who proceeded to double his and his side’s tally six minutes after the half-hour mark.

GFA did manage to pull one back in the 52nd minute when Jordan struck, but the designated visitors remained in control of the tie and went on to wrap up the points in injury-time when Michele Di Piedi added a third.

Meanwhile, Kanbawza will be left rueing their failure to make second spot their own after being held to a 1-1 draw by Magway on Friday.

It looked as though KBZ were headed for the win when Kyaw Zayar Win fired them ahead in the 35th minute, but Ko Ko Naing netted five minutes into the second half to earn Magway a share of the spoils.

In Friday’s other game, Ayeyawady United continued their recent good run of form as they beat Southern Myanmar 4-1 to make it four wins in a row.

Ayeyawady were always in control of proceedings after two goals in nine minutes by Nanda Lin Kyaw Chit handed them a comfortable lead inside the opening half-hour, before he completed his hat-trick to make it 3-0 a minute after halftime.

Shotaro Ihata did manage to reduce the deficit for Southern Myanmar in the 53rd minute, but Sasa Rankovic struck three minutes later to complete the rout for Ayeyawady.

Saturday’s action saw Manaw Myay and Zeyar Shwe Myay play out a thrilling 4-4 draw that saw both sides leading at the Thuwunna Stadium.

After Chukwuazu Chidiebere had broken the deadlock from the spot in the eighth minute, Sunday struck two minutes before the half-hour mark to double Zeyar Shwe Myay’s lead, only for Molo Hilaire Assale to pull one back through a penalty of his own on the stroke of halftime.

Ibrahim Ouattara then scored to level the scores in the 51st minute, but Ekoule Martin restored Zeyar Shwe Myay’s lead on the hour mark as they looked to brush off any challenge their opponents posed.

Nonetheless, Ollo Kambou made it 3-3 with eight minutes remaining and remarkably, Manaw Myay then edged ahead in the final minute when Assale grabbed his second of the evening.

However, it was not to be for them as Chukwuazu also grabbed a brace of his own in the second minute of injury-time to force the draw for Zeyar Shwe Myay.

Finally, Zwekapin United claimed their third successive victory after beating Chin United 2-1 at the Bogyoke Aung San Stadium.

Following a goalless first half, Naing Naing Kyaw helped Zwekapin draw first blood four minutes after the hour mark before their lead was doubled in the 77th minute through a Tin Win Aung strike.

Keith Murtu Nah did manage to pull one back for Chin two minutes from time but it proved to be a mere consolation, as the designated hosts held out for the win.

Friday’s Myanmar National League Results

Ayeyawady United 4-1 Southern Myanmar

Kanbawza 1-1 Magway

Saturday’s Myanmar National League Results

Manaw Myay 4-4 Zeyar Shwe Myay

Zwekapin United 2-1 Chin United

Sunday’s Myanmar National League Results

Yangon United 2-2 Yadanarbon

GFA 1-3 Nay Pyi Taw