admitted to being offended that the Buns hadn't put out their first team. "To me, that's kind of disrespectful. I don't really want to talk about it much more."
Team coaches Hovaness Noubaryan
and Sikong Darong
had other, bigger concerns on their mind in contrast, from how they interacted before their joint press conference. Noubaryan confirmed it. "It's a warm-up, and Sikong has every right to do what he thinks best for his club."
That stand made clear, Noubaryan would turn to the topic of the newcomers to II.2: Be Champions FC, Joker 9B and Real Balmoral. Giants BCFC, winner of so many local trophies, have been on something of a prolonged slump, and it was clear that they may not stop in Division Two if nothing changes. "But there's still no bigger name among extant Singaporean clubs." Noubaryan said. "They will still fill stadiums."
Noubaryan agreed that there remained very little to separate the five holdovers from last season, and that it will likely be the same with Joker 9B and Real Balmoral. "They're quite similar to us in general philosophy, from what I can tell. Joker 9B have profited from their association with their primary club, who have now made the S-League, and the pair of Leow Yew Li and Zach Liang have been unstoppable up front. Imrich Tršo seems willing to let them go, though, which indicates that they won't be banking on big personalities."
"As for Real Balmoral, it will be their first experience at this level, having spent fourteen straight seasons in III.7. Their board has been nothing if not methodical in plotting their ascent, and although their Belgian head coach Augustijn Guibert is new to the club, he has ample experience with other teams, most recently Westfalia Grafschaft. I see him keeping to Balmoral's vision."
Farmer Bunnies likewise have legends on board, and their opening match with be against five-time S-League winners Parkway Paladins, also like BCFC sadly reduced. JUtd and Ropelearner FC will be familiar names to the Grilled set amongst the other new faces, with the ever-present Terillions FC making up the quartet, after eleven long seasons in III.12.
's analysis was rather more succinct. "We want to win the league and promote yesterday."