If reactions were relatively muted after Grilled's confirmation of their ascension to the top flight, it was because most of their supporters had expected no other possibility for some time. "We're almost burnt out by now." longtime diehard Audrey Tan said.
With Singapore Big Dogs' 1-1 draw against Ramseille Volliard FC in II.4, former national cupwinners United Legends FC have also secured their promotion from II.1. The Birds and Legends will replace Ropelearner FC and Oneteamtoplay, both of whom cannot catch up to Mia San Toa Payoh in sixth place in the S-League. Mia San will have to play a qualifier, while Arrogancae's fate hangs on whether Bot Team FC can scrape a point at title challengers KingofNoobs United.
In fact, Grilled would have promoted however their match turned out, thanks to Joker 9's home upset of -= Manchester United =-. Hovaness Noubaryan
wasn't having any of that, though. "There's history in the making here. The players are all excited, and I want them to go up with as much confidence as they can muster."
This has, by the way, left the Farmer Bunnies out in the cold, as they will be prevented by league regulations from promoting, even if they somehow manage to overhaul JUtd. As it was, they managed a serviceable 1-0 home win over The EV, with Mushtag Al-Nameeri
finding the winner while surrounded in the 17th minute. In a script reversal, it was the visitors who played on the counter, and they almost equalized through Chang Wai Rong from a fine 61st minute specimen.
The Buns will nevertheless do their best against Ambush F.C. on the final day, while hoping that littlehorse manage something against JUtd. "A first Division Two title would be great, even if we can't go up." Dalibor Kostadinović
mentioned. "We want a winning habit here."
Kostadinović also confirmed that Kwek Yun Jie
had been cleared fit for today's game, but ultimately played no part out of residual concerns. "Lau Chang Wan
is already out for a fortnight from national duties. I'm not about to play fast and loose with injuries."
Belgian semi-professionals Karottentrekkers were no issue at all for Grilled International, who cemented a second-place finish with a 9-0 whitewash. There were somehow no hat-tricks on display, and not for want of opportunities for Didi Reidenbach
, who counted a penalty amongst his two goals; Hesky Atmanegara
completed the scoring ten minutes after coming on.
Happiest of all had to be German youngster Tibor Atzenhain
, who returned from a busted ankle to claim his first professional-level goals today. A straightforward tap-in after 32 minutes would be followed by a sensational foray late, as he took on and got past several defenders by his lonesome.