Albirex off the mark after putting six past Warriors

Albirex Niigata (S) picked up their first points of the 2015 S.League season after recording a resounding 6-0 win over defending champions Warriors FC on Saturday evening.

The White Swans opened the scoring at the Woodlands Stadium in the 20th minute when Rion Taki found space on the edge of the area, and unleashed a fierce strike that Neezam Aziz got a hand to but was unable to keep out.

Making matters worse for the hosts, Neezam picked up an injury in the process and had to be replaced by Prime League goalkeeper Nur Amin Malik, who was only on the bench due to an illness to second-choice custodian Daniel Ong.

The 19-year-old initially did well when he pulled off a fine save to keep out a bullet header from Atsushi Kawata, but there was little he could do four minutes after the half-hour mark when Marin Vidosevic sent a miscued clearance looping over him towards the back post, where the luckless Syaqir Sulaiman suffered the ignominy of scoring an own-goal as he tried to rectify his team-mate’s mistake.

Kawata was next to strike for the visitors in the 42nd minute with a blistering 25-yard strike that took an awkward bounce before beating Nur Amin, and the Albirex forward repeated the feat on the stroke of halftime with a stunning swerving effort that found its way into the top corner.

Four minutes after the break, any hopes Warriors had of mounting a second-half fightback were firmly ended when Hikaru Mizuno made it 5-0 with a low drive that sailed past the hapless opposition keeper.

And in the 73rd minute, the visitors went on to complete the rout after Kento Nagasaki cut in from the left and fired away a curling effort that Nur Amin could only help into the roof of his net.

In the end, it was just one of those days for Warriors as they carved out their fair share of chances as Vidosevic and Nicolas Velez both had efforts come back off the woodwork, while Yosuke Nozawa made a number of outstanding stops to keep the hosts at bay.

Warriors FC: Neezam Aziz (Nur Amin Malik 23’), Syaqir Sulaiman (Nur Asyidiq 46’), Daniel Bennett, Marin Vidosevic, Irwan Shah, Shi Jiayi, Kevin McCann, Miroslav Pejic (Emmeric Ong 62’), Hafiz Rahim, Fazli Jaffar, Nicolas Velez.

Albirex Niigata (S): Yosuke Nozawa, Mikiya Yamada, Takahiro Saito, Kento Fujihara, Itsuki Yamada, Hikaru Mizuno, Shun Inaba, Fumiya Kogure (Yusuke Mukai 80’), Atsushi Kawata, Rion Taki (Rui Kumada 70’), Shotaro Ihata (Kento Nagasaki 58’).

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