First Off The Blocks
More Marty History
Grilled found themselves at the top of the S-League after the first round of matches, thanks to a comprehensive 4-0 spanking of longtime adversaries FC RaZer Infernus. Including the twin Cup final wins, this latest result extends Grilled's streak over RaZer to seven matches, with a 16-5 goal record in those games. RaZer still have the all-time goal difference lead, though, thanks mostly to the 7-0 massacre in the first meeting between the sides.
The dodgy weather limited attendance at The Cooking Pot, despite both sides fielding a strong team and Nawaz Talib
making his league debut. RaZer may have been mistaken in trying to soak up Grilled's pressure, however, as their naturally offensive-minded team looked uncomfortable on the backfoot.
Still, Ola Martinsson
looked covered when he got a ball to his feet from Jie Siong. Only he would know how he twisted by the attentions of both Peter Patel and Wang Wee-Hwa, shuffling control from one foot to another with deceptive ease. Patel's last-ditch barge threw Martinsson slightly off balance, but he recovered fast enough to slot home under Mak for the honour of the new season's first S-League goal.
Fredgård followed up with a second before the celebrations had quietened, as Grilled went on the warpath immediately after RaZer's own long ball gambit from kickoff was headed off by Talib. Fredgård was awfully far from his usual position when Han Kok had time to look up in the attacking third, but the midfielder didn't ask any questions as he threaded it through a gap in defence. The burly Swede sweeper kept his composure to take it past an unhappy-looking Mak.
RaZer's normally unflappable goalkeeper would have much more to be angry about had Sid been wearing his shooting boots - in the very next minute, his defence suddenly felt it wise to stand off a man who made his name on his long-range exploits, essentially granting Sid a free shot albeit from twenty-five metres. Luckily for them, Sid got it all wrong.
That didn't stop Grilled from continuing their dream start as RaZer's nightmare sank in. Dutch winger Hidde van Liere
may be getting in on years, but he showed that he still had speed to burn at 28. RaZer's central defence was again not up to the task of catching the slippery van Liere, and a stroke of his left foot left Grilled's archrivals three goals down after just ten minutes.
Understandably delighted with the way the game was turning out, Alcántara signalled for the midfield to slow the game down and reduce fatigue. Even so, Grilled could have plopped yet another one in, as Jie Siong impetuously broke past Feuchter on the left side without any support. He managed a stiff shot that didn't miss the upright by too much and worried Mak enough to dive across.
More excitement was available right from the restart, with the travelling fans looking on glumly as a panicked backpass forced Mak to handle it just to prevent an own goal. Martinsson tapped the indirect free-kick to Paullin via Sid's dummy as the entire RaZer squad squeezed between the posts, but Paullin's strike got too close to Mak.
The game was held up for some time as some Grilled players thought that their opponents had rushed before the whistle had blown, but had to settle for the corner as the referee threatened to book complainants. They need not have bothered, as Mak spilled Simon's challenging header, which left Han Kok to nip in and slide the ball over the line for a fourth.
RaZer to their credit maintained their discipline, and began to pepper the Grilled goal with attempts as Grilled lapsed into complacency. Their best effort came from Thai midfielder Udom Kitrattana, who put all his considerable strength behind an absolute hammer of a strike that had Sulaiman nursing his wrist after saving it.
The home support, which had up to now been happy as a lark, was riled up by Gildo Payer's ugly challenge on van Liere. It was a classic striker's tackle that was followed through despite van Liere having transferred the ball to his other side, and left the Dutchman writhing in real pain. The silver lining was that it allowed a bright-eyed Peter Fjällbratt
to taste S-League action at the first opportunity.Ola Martinsson
's attempt at a double was thwarted by the long-suffering Mak, who stood his ground as the Swede dashed in from the right and hit his shot hard and low. A fifth appeared to be on the books when Jie Siong got through after Spirig misdirected the whole defence, but he placed it well wide in his eagerness to score.