BALESTIER KHALSA 0
HOUGANG UNITED 3
Geison Moura 33′, Faiz Salleh 88′, Diego Gama 90′
The Cheetahs have given a shock to the Tigers, when they stunned the Cup holders 3-0 at their own backyard on Tuesday evening.
A goal from in-form striker Geison Moura, plus two late goals in three minutes; with substitute Faiz Salleh and Diego Gama both getting their act at the Toa Payoh Stadium.
However, the game was a tight-affair with both teams equal on possession, although the Cheetahs had the biggest fortune in getting their shots on target more.
The Cheetahs showed their intent on revenging their last years’ Singapore Cup defeat right from the start. Geison Moura got an excellent through ball from Diego Gama, but Tigers’ young defender Nurullah Hussein equalled the Brazillian by blocking the shot.
Minutes later, Nurhilmi Jasni’s shot was deflected off Tajeli Selamat, however, the ball sailed far off the goal.
Diego Gama then had his freekick palmed out by Zaiful Nizam on twenty minutes. By then, the Tigers finally found their way through a stubborn Hougang backline.
Zulkifli Hashim did his best to float in a cross from the right. Goran Ljubojevic rose high to head towards home, however, Fadhil Salim equalled the shot by clearing with his legs.
However, Hougang’s effort paid off on 33 minutes. Azhar Sairudin putting a cross across the Tigers’ defence. Geison Moura managed to slid through in-time to bundle the ball past Zaiful Nizam for the lead.
Syed Thaha almost got an equalizer at the end of the first half, with a 25-yard freekick, which went wide.
The Cheetahs returned in the second half with a stronger intent of revenge. On 55 minutes, Nurhilmi Jasni’s cross was met by Fazli Jaffar, however, Zaiful Nizam managed to palm the ball out.
Azhar Sairudin then had an opportunity from distance palmed out by Zaiful again, however, the rebound fell to Geison’s head, in which Zaiful did a spectacular double save.
The game seemed to head into the end of the game, when Amin Nasir introduced youngster Faiz Salleh into the game with two minutes remaining.
The 22-year old answered his coach call, by excellently heading home a freekick by Shunsuke Nakamura to kill off any hopes of a Balestier comeback.
The rout was completed when Diego Gama completed an excellent game for Hougang by tapping in Faiz Salleh’s pass home.
The Cheetahs will complete their Group D fixture against DPMM FC at Hougang Stadium next Monday.
Fadhil Salim, Igor Ferreira, Wahyudi Wahid, Lau Meng Meng, Faizal Amir, Shunsuke Nakatake, Azhar Sairudin (Erwan Gunawan 83′), Nurhilmi Jasni (Fairoz Hasan 81′), Fazli Jaffar, Geison Moura (Faiz Salleh 87′), Diego Gama.
Zaiful Nizam, Emir Lotinac, Nurullah Hussein, Tajeli Selamat (Yusiskandar Yusop 82′), Johnathan Xu, Syed Thaha, Poh Yifeng, Park Kang-jin (Muhaymin Salim 81′), Zulkifli Hashim (Ruhaizad Ismail 60′), Kim Min-ho, Goran Ljubojevic.