HOUGANG UNITED 2
Azhar Sairudin 34′, Thomas Beattie 60′
DPMM FC 1
Shahrulrizal Rahman 40′
Hougang made it four wins out of five, when they thumped a listless DPMM side 2-1, on a wet Hougang Stadium pitch on Wednesday night.
The rain was pouring down the North East for the entire game, however, the Hougang spirit was never in question against a team where the Cheetahs rarely took away points.
With Stephane Auvray, Dino Drpic and Ivan Bosnjak all parted ways with the Bruneian outfit, and Joao Moreira benched, the DPMM side looked more ordinary than the side which drew 3-3 at the Bandar Seri Begawan in March.
As usual, it was DPMM who started all the attacking early in the first half. Adi Said got past the entire defence once on 14 minutes, however, Fadhil Salim was fast to react to clear the ball.
On a wet pitch, Hougang were increasingly frustrated, especially the diving antics of Shahrazen Said, who spent more time rolling on the floor and off the pitch for treatment, rather than being his own self.
However, their patience were paid off on 34 minutes, from a corner, where Nurhilmi Jasni fed the ball on an onrushing Azhar Sairudin, who coolly placed the ball on the top corner of the net, past Wardun Yussoff.
However, six minutes later, after a weak clearance from the Hougang defence from a corner, the ball dropped to Shahrulrizal Rahman, who scored in similar fashion where Azhar Sairudin had scored earlier.
The half time score ended 1-1. The Lightning Warning System lighted up just seconds after half-time, however, it was just for a short while, as thunder and lightning continue to threaten the status of the game.
The Cheetahs went attacking on all fronts early in the second half. A flurry of chances came begging for the home team,with Liam Shotton’s thunderbolt almost brought the Hougang Stadium to roar. Mamadou Diallo came close on 57 minutes, after a header from a corner hit the crossbar.
However, on 60 minutes, Hougang took an unsurprising lead. Azhar Sairudin’s free kick was punched out by Wardun. However, Thomas Beattie was at the right place to strike the rebound into the net to bring the stadium to a thunderous roar.
Vjedran Simunic then decided to introduce his trump card, Joao Moreira on 79 minutes, and minutes later, he almost produced an instant result by producng a looping header, which went slightly above the crossbar.
The closest the Wasps came close to scoring was on 80 minutes, when Adi Said managed to evade Syaqir Sulaiman and produced a shot from outside the box. However, Fadhil Salim managed to save the ball.
Hougang almost made it three in the dying minutes, after Mamadou Diallo managed to get past the defence and found an onrushing Basit Hamid. However, Basit produced a weak shot that Wardun has no problems to save.
The scoreline remained till the final whistle. With the victory, the Cheetahs moved up to seventh, in which the neutrals see it as a remarkable rise of the Hougang side. Hougang will next meet Albirex Niigata at Jurong East Stadium on 23rd May.
Fadhil Salim, Syaqir Sulaiman, Hasree Zais, Lau Meng Meng, Faizal Amir, Thomas Beattie, Nurhilmi Jasni (Fairoz Hasan 85′), Fazli Jaffar (Shahir Hamzah 83′), Azhar Sairudin, Mamadou Diallo, Liam Shotton (Basit Hamid 87′)
Wardun Yussof, Tales Dos Santos, Shahrulrizal Abd Rahman, Pg Sallehuddin Damit, Sairol Sahari (Awangku Fakharrazi 88′), Azwan Saleh (Joao Moreira 79′), Hendra Azam, Rosmin Kamis, Helmi Zambin, Adi Said, Shahrazen Said