Very Close Now
Grilled again finished one win off the title, but Niculae Stanca
refused to read too much into that. "We know we can do it, but we just lack that little bit. Also, Rapala FC and newbies are both very strong teams too, and really there's very little to pick between us. Our key men are still relatively young, and I daresay we will be back, better than ever."
This did not go down well with some of the Grilled fans. "Mohd Safri, Chow, Tian and Zhu will all be touching 27 next season, and they seriously deserve to be featuring in the S-League." longtime follower Ismail Razak pointed out. "If we don't do it next season, I fear some of them will be angling for a move."
at least appeared content as he collected his Golden Boot after the match, having finished four goals clear of runner-up Huang Kangyan, completing a Grilled three-peat with Mohd Safri bin Mohd Kassim
and Chow Ying Lee
taking it in the previous two seasons. Stanca didn't hide his delight at the accomplishment when asked to comment.
"They hasn't even been a time when all three fired on all cylinders together, and that's one of the things I most want to see before I complete my tenure here. It should also be remembered that none of them take penalties or free-kicks - if they did, each of them would arguably already have surpassed the output of even Maikel Rotteveel at his best!"
Tian himself chose to place the focus elsewhere, as he dedicated his award to newbies' national legend Roshadi bin Che Rusli, himself a four-time Division Two Golden Boot winner, who rediscovered his old fire in hitting four past TTTNW. "I would be delighted to finish my career with half of his achievements." Tian said. "And not to forget my teammates either, without whom I could never have gotten this."
Rapala FC will now challenge Tanglin Winners FC for a spot in the top flight, while Wee Li'l Lads and former S-League club Young Tigers will get their shot at getting into II.2.