Grilled Birds 5 - 3 Queenstown MZKs
League, Season 8816 June 2024 04:30 HTT
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Grilled BirdsQueenstown MZKs
Mohd Marzuki Khairul (3)
Chia Kwang Tse (30)
Mohd Marzuki Khairul (33)
Lim An Keng (40)
Chad Thach (63)
Amal Razin Abdul Rafi (23)
Combo M'Madi (56)
Combo M'Madi (59)

Queen Under Check
Midfielders Step Up

In their historic thousandth league match, Grilled Birds saw off Queenstown MZKs despite fielding only a single recognized striker in Gústav Thoroddsen, who didn't even score; instead, it would be Mohd Marzuki Khairul and Chia Kwang Tse to drive this new-look Birds lineup from behind, as Tian Yonghang was vindicated in his assessment that the team could still outperform while cutting personnel.
MZKs had looked pretty good in putting Glory Paradiso down 3-1 last Sunday, mind, and while Phua Jing Wee was still unavailable due to an injured shoulder, there remained much to shout about their players. Turkish captain Adem Boğ had been a reliable scorer for them, and there would be strength to spare throughout their central spine, with Gavin Rotenberg, Tomáš Aron and local former national U-20 midfielder Amal Razin Abdul Rafi all well capable of a place in Grilled's side.

None of that mattered once French referee Benjamin Israël got the ball rolling, and doubts over the efficacy of Grilled's goal production machine - despite very familiar faces throughout - would be dispelled within three minutes. Chad Thach and Lim An Keng would not look out of place at all further forward than usual, but concrete reinforcement would come via Marzuki, who knew exactly what he was going to do once Brian Reddy's searching cross dropped towards him. Ignoring a late closing-down by Satya Khade, Marzuki would go for the volley head-on, and hit a dipping screamer past London Ng.

This was not the start that their Italian head coach Diego Maestri was looking for, and there would be a flurry of gesticulations, that appeared to be taken well by his men. MZKs stabilized and began to direct more of their play wide, apparently as instructed, which paid off in the 23rd minute when Kwek Ho Jie caught Reddy neglecting his defensive duties. The inbound pass would be short to the feet of fellow former Young Lion Amal Razin Abdul Rafi, who dodged Aw Keng Chuan to shuffle it past Dimitris Germanakos.

The rest of the first half belonged to the Birds, who punished the visitors' passivity after equalizing. Chia Kwang Tse would strike hard and true in the 30th, followed three minutes later by another sweet finish by Marzuki, whose heightened buzz contributed to his flattening Boğ for a yellow card abit later. Fortunately, the MZKs captain was not seriously hurt, and the match continued with Chad Thach's curler being blocked by Ng. It proved a temporary respite, as Lim An Keng made it four with a solid grounder, on Grilled's next attack.

It was the Birds' turn to get complacent with their three-goal lead, with Comoros forward Combo M'Madi being the bearer of bad news. A standout since his arrival from Sweden's Dynamo Ljungdalen for some S$6 million three seasons ago, M'Madi would prove deadly from range, as he lined up an eighteen-yarder free-kick with unsaveable precision into the top corner, just clearing Chia Kwang Tse's leap at the far end of the defensive wall.

Three minutes later in the 59th, M'Madi was at it again, as he rotated smartly on his pivot leg to lob Germanakos, once Gilberto Raas laid the ball off to him. The MZKs fans' full-throated approval rocked The Cooking Pot at this point, and it might have gotten very dicey for Grilled indeed, had Chad Thach not stamped his authority down fast. Brian Reddy would prove irresistable moving forward despite his other deficiencies, and he would lay the path for Thach to follow up with an impressive sprint inside the box, for 5-3.

Gandhik Chitre provided some fresh legs from the 70th minute on as he came on for Hwang Teck Fu, and it seemed as if Gústav Thoroddsen would record an obligatory goal, as he stylishly tapped the ball over Rotenberg's hasty challenge 80 minutes in, but the finish was not one of his finest. Hernán Fernández del Cerro then threatened to make the finale very interesting indeed, as he sliced his way in from the left, only for Dimitris Germanakos to get a strong hand in the way.

    Hollow Chuckle
    Quik By The Horns
    Tokarz Real Rest
    Queen Under Check
    Really A Chore
    One Last Look
    Simply Done
    Merlions Drench Bunnies
    Unlucky Thirteen
    Ejected From Saloon
2016-08-01 00:37:41
anonymous: Thanks for the special mention :) I would just like to expre...
2015-08-17 18:50:02
anonymous: excellent read as always!- Yjorn
2015-06-13 03:08:41
anonymous: Rasha say
2014-12-14 16:56:39
gilbertlim: well, it seemed like that.
2014-12-12 18:26:33
anonymous: I didn't play a 4-5-2
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