Sergio Wins It For Wasps Against Spirited Eagles
By Eagles Admin on 18 April 2015
Brunei DPMM’s latest signing, Paulo Sergio scored the game’s winner and handed the Wasps a slim yet vital 1-0 victory over Geylang International at the Bedok Stadium on 16th April 2015.
DPMM are serious title contenders and are currently the only unbeaten team in the Great Eastern Yeo’s S. League. However, they were given a run for their money by the hosts, Geylang whom showcased an unwavering defensive master class despite their narrow defeat to the Bruneian outfit.
Steve Kean’s charges started the first-half brightly and displayed their hunger for goals within the opening 10 minutes. DPMM’s towering duo, Rafael Ramazotti and Brian McLean had glorious opportunities to head home the opener from set-pieces, but the Eagles’ ever-reliable custodian, Yazid Yazin was there to parry away both attempts from danger.
On the other hand, Geylang seemed to lack some decisive passing in the final-third of the pitch, as both Hafiz Nor and Bruno Castanheira made swift runs down the flanks, but their crosses into the box failed to find any of their awaiting teammates.
Nevertheless, the Wasps continued knocking on Geylang’s goal as they attempted to play direct long balls to the 1.94cm Ramazotti. Then again, Geylang’s defence performed exceptionally well at keeping the current top goal scorer with six goals, Ramazotti at bay with good aerial challenges and clearances.
Tatsuro Inui was presented the first chance on target when he spearheaded a counter-attack move in the 40th minute and launched a rocket goal bound. However, DPMM’s goalkeeper Wardun Yussof, denied the Japanese the opening goal with a superb diving save.
Geylang’s skipper, Jozef Kaplan, also got into the thick as he fired two blistering attempts towards goal within one minute, but it were duly blocked and cleared by the colossal, McLean on both occasions.
The last chance of the first-half, fell to Eagles’ forward Castanheira as his header from Inui’s corner-kick delivery, blazed over the bar and the match concluded for the half-time break.
Two minutes after the restart, Brunei DPMM came the closest in opening the scoring when an exceptional free-kick delivery by Azwan Ali, evaded everyone in the box, including the Eagles’ custodian, but fortunately for Geylang, the ball slammed against the post and was eventually cleared away to safety.
Kaplan, who also won the ‘Geylang International FC Player of The Month (March 2015) Award’ that night, was given another chance to extend his goal tally but his shot was comfortably gathered by the Wasps’ custodian, Yusoff.
Former Sporting Lisbon’s youth player, Sergio was on fire in the second-half. He spotted Yazin off his line and attempted a long range effort, which eventually sailed wide. A few minutes later, with his vast experience, he threaded a beautiful defence-splitting pass to Ali, who fired his shot straight at Yazin who pushed it away for a corner-kick.
Soon later, Sergio switched from playing the adopted second/support striker’s role to his renowned dazzling winger’s position. That tactical switch, allowed the Portuguese to shine on the flanks with his nifty skills, alongside, his pin-point deliveries to their target man – Rafael Ramazotti.
Then again, the only player who stood in the way of those crosses to Ramazotti was the valiant Japanese, Kento Fukuda. He undoubtedly, stole the show with his defensive heroics, to deny any crosses or passes to the DPMM’s one-man strike-force.
However, Geylang couldn’t hold on much longer as DPMM’s persistence eventually paid off when they broke the deadlock and netted a wonderful goal courtesy of a moment’s brilliance by none other than Paulo Sergio.
The only goal of the game and the moment which shattered Geylang’s hearts came nine minutes from time. Sergio’s nifty footwork and amazing display of skills in the penalty box, allowed him to turn three defenders, before firing home the opener from a tight angle, despite Yazin getting a hand to the ball.
Trailing by a goal and with only a few minutes left, Jorg Steinbrunner then made two offensive minded substitutions in search for an equalizer. Geylang then, introduced Shawal Anaur and Huzaifah Aziz for Syed Thaha and Anaz Hadee, respectively.
However, it was too little too late as visitors’ Brunei DPMM walk away victoriously, leaving Geylang rooted at 7th spot with one win, two draws and three losses with five points.
Geylang’s Head Coach Jorg Steinbrunner, admitted that his side ‘should not have lost’ and explained, “I am pleased with the boys’ performance as they played to the tactics and plays. However it was very unfortunate as we went toe to toe with one of the best teams in the league today, but at the end of the day, we need to make sure we stop making silly mistakes in order to get the points”.
Geylang now have to look forward to next Monday’s fixture against the Malaysian U-23 side, Harimau Muda as they travel to the coveted, Hang Jebat Stadium in search for maximum points.
Full Time : Geylang International FC 0 – 1 (Paulo Sergio 81′) Brunei DPMM FC
EAGLES’ Editor Man Of The Match: Kento Fukuda
Geylang International FC: Yazid Yazin (GK) , Anaz Hadee (Huzaifah Aziz 90′), Kento Fukuda, Yuki Ichikawa, Hafiz Osman, Syed Thaha (Shawal Anuar 87′), Tatsuro Inui, Khairulnizam Jumahat, Jozef Kaplan (C), Hafiz Nor, Bruno Castanheira.