First Step Taken
It was a far more celebratory mood in the away dressing room, as the Birds recorded their sixth straight win, if ladder tournament games are included, in the week since their dreadful defeat to JUtd. Tian Yonghang
was the toast of the team as his two goals won it early on, with several of his teammates engaging in mock worship of the forward who is back on top of the scorers' table, together with JUtd's Tayfun Sarayköy, newbies' Huang Kangyan and Rapala's José Alberto Nilo.
"It's a good response, that's for sure." Zhao Jing Wei
commented, looking pleased. "We shouldn't let it get to our heads, though. Young Tigers are up next, then a very tough test against newbies and a visit from the unpredictable Zambree FC. I would be disappointed if we got less than six points from these matches."
For today, Zambree smashed the Tigers 5-1 and sent them to the bottom of the table in what was probably not an accurate reflection of what went on on the pitch, and Tigers' veteran French goalkeeper Michaël Hautin will have to have a good look at himself. It was the exact opposite for Zambree's 18 year-old Number One Colby Wong, who had just won his first U-20 cap a fortnight ago, and by the looks of his performance, is due for many more.
newbies for their part brought SKF F.C. back down to earth with a 6-1 whipping, with Huang Kangyan finding a hat-trick. The former TTTNW striker fell awkwardly four minutes from time, though, and was seen leaving the newbies ground on crutches. Reports have it that he will miss the big game against high-flying JUtd, who are the only club on six points after dominating champions Rapala FC 4-1, and is further a doubt to face the Birds.
"I wouldn't be banking on Huang not being available, he's a determined one." head coach Niculae Stanca
added. "For now, I'm more interested in stopping Young Tigers' Donnie van der Ven and Carlos Escuteiro, who were massively unlucky today. Still, I think the advantage is with us."