Cheetahs and Rams fight to a four goal thriller in opening weekend

Igor Cerina 17′, Fazli Jaffar 32′

Taufiq Ghani 24′, Moon Soon Ho 69′

The Cheetahs opened their opening fixture with a point, on a windy Saturday night that promised full of action.

The Cheetahs led twice on that day, only for the Rams to come back to equalize and salvage a point for both sides.

Both teams started strongly for this game, yearning for the maximum points offered. With both sets of fans, the Hougang HOOLS and the Northern Rams vociferously cheering for both teams, it was promised to be an all-blood encounter.

It was Hougang, dressed up in an all-luminous orange kit, who opened up the scoring. A corner kick pass towards Azhar Sairudin, who crossed it towards Igor Cerina, who headed it past Yazid Yasin to open the floodlights in the 17th minute.

The Rams then replied seven minutes later. Atsushi Shimono’s freekick was deflected by the Hougang wall towards an unmarked Taufiq Ghani, who stabbed the ball home from closed range.

The Cheetahs then had a one on one chance. Geison Moura sent cleared by Japanese anchorman Shunsuke Nakatake, but his shot was blocked by Yazid Yasin.

However, on 32 minutes, the Cheetahs found a break through. Shunsuke Nakatake gleefully lobbed above the Rams’ defence towards Fazli Jaffar, who volleyed the ball home for the lead.

Geison Moura then had the ball into the net on 43 mins, but it was disallowed for offside.

Half time ensued with the home side taking a deserving lead. With the Cheetahs overpowering the Rams especially in midfield, Darren Stewart decided to put in Stefan Milojevic to shore things up in attack.

It paid dividends for the Rams, as on 69 mins, a failed clearance by Djurica Zuparic led Moon Soon Ho into a one-on-one situation with Fadhil Salim, and the 2013 top scorer did not disappoint the Northern Rams, as he stabbed in an equalizer.

Both sides went in search of a winner, but could not find a way through.

Fadhil Salim(c), Igor Cerina, Djurica Zuparic, Lau Meng Meng, Wahyudi Wahid, Shunsuke Nakatake, Azhar Sairudin, Erwan Gunawan, Fazli Jaffar (Nurhilmi Jasni 88′), Diego Gama (Fairoz Hasan 74′), Geison Moura

Yazid Yasin, Walid Lounis, Milos Jevtic, Rosman Sulaiman, Andy Ahmad, Atsushi Shimono, Sobrie Mazelan (Stefan Milojevic 58′), Fadhil Noh, Taufiq Ghani (Armanizam Dolah 59′), Chang Jo Yoon (Goh Swee Swee 79′), Moon Soon Ho

Photo Credits: Chris Harvey
Video highlights courtesy of Voxsports.

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