|Season 58||L||8 - 9||Cup|
|Season 56||L||2 - 1||Tournament (Playoffs)|
|Season 48||L||5 - 6||Tournament (Group Phase)|
|Season 48||W||7 - 4||Tournament (Group Phase)|
|Season 44||W||1 - 0||League|
Webb Opens Deposit
The Birds got off to a roaring start in the Sapphire Challenger Cup, smashing fellow multiple-time Singapore Cup winners Edbe FC by nine goals to nil. There was additional history behind this matchup, as older Grilled fans might recognize - Edbe were the ones who had dealt Grilled their first Challenger Cup defeat after fourteen straight wins, and thus prevented the Birds from completing their set in the shortest time possible: three seasons. After that win on penalties in the Sapphire Challenger Cup semis, however, Edbe FC would fall 1-3 to The Void Deck in the finals, though they had left a gap in Grilled's trophy cabinet that has remained unfilled to the present day.
While Grilled had turned over their entire starting lineup in the eleven years hence, Edbe FC retained two men from that day - Ye Xianlun and Portuguese fullback Flávio Pimenta, both the wrong side of forty. Edbe's then-captain turned head coach Pierre-André Maton had clearly put little stock in this competition, with neither first-choice goalkeeper Omar Lima nor key striker Tillmann Tremmel being fielded.
That was just what acting captain Chan Ze Han
preferred anyway, as he got the Birds into the lead with his first touch, an outside-boot chip over Zahid Rida Asnawi as he slipped between Edbe's central defenders in the second minute. It was surely over even before Islom Davlatov
came through in much the same manner for 2-0 some six minutes later, as Edbe's young trainees were unable to protect the ball with any regularity.
It was to be honest an unfair assignment to begin with, and the Birds would take their foot off the pedal somewhat, up until Florus Romijn
pulled up with a hamstring problem in the 25th. The unplanned water break had Luis Alcántara exhorting his team to take the game more seriously, and not long after José Luiz Velho
came on for the stricken Romijn, it was four-nil. Chu Xin Lee
was again direct for the third, before Chan Ze Han
flung himself into a sepak takraw-style crossbody shot that was surely the pick of the day.
Davlatov, not to be outdone, would catch up with Chan in the scoring, as he imposed his will on Chiang Lee Kim without too much trouble. It wasn't going as well for Velho, who had to suffer the indignity of being booked, after throwing himself belatedly to the ground upon being stopped by Marián Dušenko. Referee Elia Gonser might yet have ignored that, only for Velho to launch into what was always an untenable protest.
That unedifying moment more or less marked the end of Grilled's efforts for the first half, but they were soon back in the mood after a short rest. Ye putting the ball behind was probably the right decision with Moey Xin Seng
breathing down his neck in the 51st minute, but all it did was to set Bilal Mohammad Harun
up from the corner.
After nearly four years of being without a hat-trick, Chan Ze Han
looked to have found a taste for them, as he earned his second in four games with his 62nd minute tap-in. There wasn't much patting of himself on the back for that achievement, and Chan would quickly be involved in Bilal's second goal; his suffocating press left Chiang with nowhere to turn, and Bilal would steal in before the defender could get his bearings on a pass back to Zahid.
It was then left to Scotsman Gilbert Webb
to open his Grilled account, in his eleventh start for the club. Having seventeen goals before arriving, Webb wasn't exactly a complete novice in finding the net, and it showed when he instinctively intercepted a pass meant for Moey. No hard feelings, though, especially not when Webb had the skill to find the top corner on his shot.