When Hougang United hosts Tampines Rovers at Hougang Stadium this Friday, the 24th of July, they will be facing a team looking to end a slump that started after the two sides’ previous meeting in the 2015 S.League competition.
Despite an impressive start to the season with 3 wins from 4 outings – the last of which was a 2:0 win over Hougang United at Jurong West Stadium – Tampines Rovers have since found themselves mired with just 1 win in their last 8 games. Perennial underdogs Hougang United are no strangers to a bad run of results but after taking 11 games to secure their first competitive win this year, the Cheetahs’ form have recently improved with 3 wins and just 2 losses in their previous 7 games. Only four points now separates the two sides in the league table though Tampines Rovers have two games in hand.
Two members of the Brunei DPMM side that finished as league runner-ups in 2014 have since found a new home with the Stags. In Rodrigo Tosi, Tampines Rovers boasts the tournament’s top scorer for the previous year. A late replacement for an injured Fabrice Noel, Rodrigo has since scored 4 goals from 8 games for his current team while his fellow Brunei DPMM alunmi Roberto Alviz has provided 5 assists from 9 appearances.
The Stags have also added two new players during the mid-season transfer window with the arrival of Brazilian goalkeeper Rodrigo Pachecho and former LionsXII captain Isa Halim. Both Rodrigo and Isa have only played one game for their new side, a 1:0 defeat to Warriors in the League Cup.
For their part, Hougang United will be looking to get a consecutive win for the first time this year. With Geylang International and Harimau Muda facing off on the same night at Jalan Besar Stadium, a win over the Stags would lift the Cheetahs into 8th place in the table. However, fitness could be a concern given the disparity between the two teams’ schedule. While Tampines Rovers have enjoyed a 17 days break since their last match, the Cheetahs would only have 3 days to recover after their previous game.
Hougang United F.C. vs Tampines Rovers F.C.
2015 Great Eastern Yeo’s S.League
24th July 2015, Friday
7:30 pm, Hougang Stadium