Eagles Zeroing In On Warriors
Warriors FC vs Geylang International
(15 September, Friday, 7.30pm, Choa Chu Kang Stadium)
Written by: Rashid Sulaiman
After back-to-back victories over Hougang United and Balestier Khalsa, Geylang International will look to build on the momentum when they face Warriors FC at Choa Chu Kang Stadium on Friday night.
Geylang are currently in fifth on 27 points while the Warriors are a spot above on 29 points.
With just two points separating the two sides, a win here will therefore see the Eagles leapfrog the nine-time league champions in the standings.
Having collected maximum points in their previous two matches, Geylang head coach Noor Ali is cautiously optimistic his charges will be able to continue the winning streak.
“It was a brilliant performance from the boys. I’m happy with the two goals we scored but the most important thing was the three points moving forward to the Warriors game,” said Noor Ali after their win over the Tigers last week.
“It is important after beating Hougang and now Balestier, we know what is coming at us and we got the win.
“Now we are closer to Warriors and the gap is something to play for. Both of us want to finish on the high and it will be a good game when we go to the Choa Chu Kang Stadium,” added the former Singapore international.
One player that earned the praise of Noor Ali is midfielder Gabriel Quak who stole the show against Marko Kraljevic’s side over the weekend. Quak got his name on the scoresheet and created his team’s second goal of the match.
“Gabriel played well today, taking his goal well and even getting an assist in the second half. It was a good game from him and hopefully he gets a call-up back to the national team where he can be an asset to the team,” explained Noor Ali.
In addition, Noor Ali would be pleased with his team ahead of the big clash as several other players such as Darren Teh, Shawal Anuar and Anders Aplin put in decent shifts as well.
34-year-old Nor Azli Yusoff, too, did well to lead the team in the absence of club skipper Isa Halim.
As for Warriors, it has been a topsy turvy season for them with only one win in their last five matches.
Challenging for the title earlier in the campaign, Razif Onn’s side have since slid down the table and are a massive 17 points behind leaders Albirex Niigata (S).
Their previous league match saw them rough it out with Balestier in a 2-2 draw in mid-August. They were leading 2-1 but sloppy defending allowed the opponents to steal a point off them.
“It was two points dropped (against Balestier) and I thought we were unlucky. We really should have gotten the three points to catch up with teams like Home and Tampines,” said Razif.
“The freekick (for Fadli’s goal) was not properly managed. We had a few chances to score but instead passed the ball around ourselves too much.
“We were compact in our previous games but I’m not sure if it’s complacency but the team did not display that today and it’s something we will work on in training,” added the Warriors head coach.
If Warriors are to prevent an Eagles’ victory, they would need their foreign striker Andrei-Cosmin Ciolacu to fire on all cylinders. The Romanian has six goals to his name so far since replacing Joel Tshibamba in the mid-season transfer window.
Warriors FC - LDLWD
17/08/17 Balestier Khalsa 2-2 Warriors FC
04/08/17 Hougang United 0-1 Warriors FC
29/07/17 Warriors FC 1-2 Albirex Niigata (S)
25/07/17 Home United 1-1 Warriors FC
21/07/17 Albirex Niigata (S) 1-0 Warriors FC (The New Paper League Cup)
Geylang International - LWLWW
09/09/17 Geylang International 2-0 Balestier Khalsa
18/08/17 Hougang United 0-1 Geylang International
05/08/17 Albirex Niigata (S) 5-0 Geylang International
24/07/17 Brunei DPMM 0-1 Geylang International
18/07/17 Albirex Niigata (S) 4-0 Geylang International (The New Paper League Cup)
Head to Head (S.League)
16/06/17 Geylang International 0-2 Warriors FC
10/03/17 Warriors FC 1-1 Geylang International
14/10/16 Geylang International 2-1 Warriors FC
15/06/16 Warriors FC 2-0 Geylang International
01/04/16 Geylang International 2-2 Warriors FC