Just Another Opening Win
The Birds would not have many issues in the first round of the Singapore Cup despite their rebuilding process, and finished up with a 5-0 scoreline against City-based IV.4 club ju5tan0therper50n, who were founded midway through the previous season. Their head coach Chris Luong had yet to venture into the transfer market in that time, and it showed in the earnest but limited side they put out.
ju5tan0therper50n did have some watchable players such as fullback Dillon Lee and 20 year-old right winger Steven Koo, but this was hardly sufficient to overcome a lack of similar ability elsewhere. They started positively in a standard 4-4-2, but this was likely to their own detriment, as the Birds' additional man in midfield naturally overmatched them; Aw Keng Chuan
tried surging forward with the ball in the fourth minute, and almost to his surprise, it worked all too well, with his scuffed finish just about trickling beyond Low Wen Boon for Grilled's first goal of the new season.
The second wouldn't take long to arrive either, as the hosts refused to believe, and had their rush from kick-off absorbed and turned on them. Gilbert Webb
sent it in the general direction of Chan Ze Han
by instinct, and it took a combined effort by Dillon Lee and Ang Kian Wei to smother the Birds star. It merely delayed the inevitable, as Chan took the free-kick immediately, and unleashed Enrique Baena
from around the left side for another goal.
That remained some impressive finishing from the Spanish youngster, who has made strides in keeping the worst of his emotions under control. Assuredly, Lim An Keng
and Moey Xin Seng
could have done better on their respective chances coming next, and it would take until the 31st minute for the Birds to bulge the net again. The 36 year-old Bilal Mohammad Harun
would dribble with head well up towards the head of the penalty area, and seasoned Grilled fans knew only too well, what that
What this match lacked was a strike by Chan Ze Han
, then, but on that front, ju5tan0therper50n were resolved not to compromise. The fabled Number Eleven would have two men stuck to him at almost all times, though he did still come out with the odd attempt, such as a 57th minute scorcher that passed inches high. Moey and Bilal would have more space as a result, but the former seemed a little out of practice, as with a bad hit two minutes later.
ju5tan0therper50n would create one or two at the other end as the Birds' defensive discipline wavered, and their Number Nine Adam Pan would do well to get one off in the 69th minute, nearly redirected into his own net by Enrique Baena
- but Dimitris Germanakos
was light on his feet then, and maintained his clean sheet. Moey would finally claim his goal eight minutes on, as the hosts continued to prioritize suffocating Chan; the shot was on just five metres out, almost unmissable.
Moey would be replaced by Kalki Parvathaneni
for the final ten minutes, and the returnee would be determined not to be forgotten, from how he went about the business. There would be a fifth for Kalki in the last minute, as young centreback Eu Kim Wai lost his concentration on an incoming square pass, and also a yellow card for him no thanks to a rough tackle on the same, in injury time.