Herron The Holy
Grilled's players formed a guard of honour for the reigning kings of Singapore, Herron, as they trooped out onto the pitch at the hallowed Sky Ocean stadium in front of over a hundred thousand delirious fans.
The Birds had made an appearance mostly to confirm the hosts' worthiness for the title, and also with an eye on the final match of the season against Codingin Football Club, a fixture which they would be far more confident of snatching points from.
Central defender Niclas Ulfsson signalled that Grilled had made the right decision by swooping in for an early third-minute goal off Richard Ashton's cross, which gave the illusion of hanging in the air when it reached Ulfsson.
Grilled kept up their tactics of pressing their opponents, and while they had their successes, all it took was one clever move by the technically excellent Herron players to throw their formation into disarray. This was what happened in the 27th minute when Zandberg leaped and swiped the ball on to Chit-Fu, who left it for the onrushing Barthélémy Boulant to bang in.
did his level best to maintain Grilled's shape, but the visitors could not help but be dragged all over by Herron's incisive short passing. Shen was finally booked for throwing himself in front of Phong, but this did not cause him to slow down, and he was instrumental in taking much of the sting out of a venomous strike by Yong-chul.
Alas, this was not enough to prevent Grilled from conceding again, and Herron showed their ruthlessness by scoring their third from a corner. Chen Haupai aimed for the far post, and Ashton timed his jump to perfection, using his 1.9m tall frame to propel the ball down and beneath Abed-Sulaiman's reach.
That was enough for the majestic Herron team, and they were satisfied with stroking the ball around for much of the second half, with Peng Phong coming closest with a sneaky attempt that bounced onto the post. Dimitri Simon
could have played Martinsson in for a consolation goal in the 57th minute, but delayed too much and was forced aside.