Saturday, July 31, 2010
Results 31/07 - Selangor CHAMPIONS!!!
Malaysia Super League
Selangor v Terengganu 2-0
Negeri Sembilan v Pahang 5-0
KL v KL Plus 0-2
Perak v Kedah 1-0
Penang v Perlis 0-0
T Team v Johor 5-0
Johor FC v Kelantan 1-3
Selangor are MSL champions with one game remaining. Latest standings after tonight's results.
Balestier Khalsa v Gombak United 0-0
Two wins in their last eight for Gombak while Balestier Khalsa have scored three in their last ten. No wonder people stayed home.
Persela finally appoint new coach
After being strongly linked with Ivan Kolev and Rahmad Darmawan Persela have now finally chosen Subangkit to be their man next season. He spent most of last season with Persema and put together a good hard working team perhaps lacking only in a poacher to convert that pretty approach play.
Not sure who he will have to work with at Persela. Last season they boasted Brazilian play maker Leanardo Zada Martins and the cute Smasul Arief who has recently been called up for national team trials by new coach Alfred Riedl.
When I say cute I don't mean he has a chubby face with a dimple in his chin. He's an intelligent player blessed with a good first touch and an eye for what's around him.
He first caught (my) the eye in the 2008/2009 Copa Indonesia campaign when he was playing with Persibo, then of the Premier League, who managed to beat some of the bigger boys during a successful campaign that took them to the quarter finals.
After a slow start at the Lamongan team he started finding the net quite regularly but it is a surprise, actually it's not, that it has taken so long to earn national recognition.
Persik defeat Persipura
Relegation threatened Persik, I have lost track of whether they have been relegated or not, of whether they will still have to play Persebaya or not, at least ended the Indonesia Cup with a slight grin after beating Persipura in the pointless 3/4th place play off.
Yongki Aribiwo, apparently being courted by Melbourne Victory didn't score and was subbed 10 minutes from the end.
Yongki wanted by A League giant
It is being reported in a football tabloid today here that A League side Melbourne Victory are eying exciting young Persik striker Yongki Aribowo.
Apparently Yongki, a 20 year old striker with good upper body strength and a sweet drive, found out about the interest on Facebook!
Friday, July 30, 2010
At the very top, expect to get shat on
In one of my carnations I lived in the sub continent for a while. The company was a hugely successful one, by local standards, but they were seeking to leap on to a band wagon they knew nothing about.
At the centre of this sprawling corporate empire sat Lord Muck himself, the Emperor over all he surveyed. In his gilded down town office where the lift needed an operator or at one of his houses where it was sometimes easier to communicate by text message he would pass edict or judgement as he saw fit.
Each instruction from his was eagerly lapped up by servile minions who hung on his every word and they would bow and scrape their knuckles along the ground as they escaped his august presence to rush and carry out the latest law.
And that was it.
When someone had the temerity to actually point out that the commandment he had passed in stone had not been carried out, why guess whose fault it was? Yeap, the complainant. Throw him to the ground, centurion.
Hold your ground and he would be gob smacked that his imperial edicts weren't being carried to the letter out as he had instructed and as he had majestically assumed.
Then we would have the daisy chain as the original groveller, who had received the instruction, pass the blame on to his underling who in turn passed it on to his underling who in turn and la-di-da-di-da down the line till usually some poor foot soldier was given a royal summons and carpeted for not carrying out his lord and master's wishes to the later. Whether he knew them or not.
Now there is someone I know, a few years younger than me, who gave me some pretty useful advise many years back and it's advise I have carried with me all along the line.
As boss first you pass on the instruction. Most people can handle this part OK, for whatever people love to feel they are in control and can boss people around and for them that's enough. Indeed I seem to recall a Swedish proverb along those lines.
Second, make sure the instructions are understood. This of course is where things often fall apart. Big powerful men, at least big, powerful, in their own minds, assume the world understands every word of their incoherent ramblings and is ready to jump into action once they say jump.
At the third stage some would like to be in karaoke bars, massage parlours or on the golf course by now, or the pious praying, there needs to be checks that the task is being carried out as per the original instructions.
Stage four there needs to be a verifiable conclusion. What this means to knuckle draggers and and bureaucratic simians is you get off your comfy chair and find out what the hell is going on.
The final stage of course is a performance review.
This doesn't come from an expensive MBA programme but from a highly successful businessman who learnt the hard way in this part of the world. And is now retired subject to controlling his pan Asian empire by email three or four times a day.
How does this translate into football?
How many times has the final decision maker taken the rap for anything in this part of the world? Scotty on the Starship Enterprise would be thrilled to bits at the deflection mechanisms the great and good deploy whenever they feel any kind of blame gets near them.
Stuff 'n' nonsense
PETALING JAYA: The FA of Malaysia’s (FAM) indecisiveness and lack of funds are depriving the National Under-21 team of a chance to play competitive football in their build-up to qualify for the 2012 London Olympics.
The once cash-rich FAM are still mulling whether to send the Harimau Muda squad to compete in the Slovakian National League (Division Two), which has already started.
The Slovakian stint was to have been part of the team’s preparations for the London Olympics.
But now, after almost two months of waiting for FAM’s answer, their chances of playing in the Slovakian League are as good as gone.
Newly-appointed National Under-21 coach Ong Kim Swee said there was nothing much he could do but to play the waiting game with his 24-player squad at the National Sports Council (NSC) Complex in Bukit Jalil.
“We are still waiting for confirmation about the trip to Slovakia,” said Kim Swee yesterday.
He said the players were continuing with their training sessions “so that we will be ready for action if we get the green light to travel to Slovakia”.
“It is important that the boys are given international exposure and the stint in Slovakia would have done them a world of good ahead of the qualifying rounds for the Olympics next year,” said Kim Swee.
He said the 1-0 win by the national Under-23 squad over their South Korean Olympic counterparts clearly showed the marked improvement made by the Malaysians.
For the record, Malaysia have qualified for two Olympic Games – Munich in 1972 and Moscow in 1980.
The Harimau Muda squad, under former coach Azraai Khor Abdullah, had earlier taken part in the Slovakian National League from February to May – playing a total of 15 matches, including two friendlies.
They gained entry into the second-tier of the League following the withdrawal of RU Sport Podbrezova in the third phase of the competition.
But those games were not official and their results did not affect the league standings.
This time, however, the Harimau Muda squad had been officially given the nod by the Slovakia FA and the Union of League Clubs to play a full season in their professional league, which kicked off in the middle of this month.
Sadly, FAM seem oblivious to that fact, saying that they expect to make an announcement on the Harimau Muda’s future at the FAM congress on Saturday.
Are you for real, FAM?
COMMENT - they are very possibly the finest players of their generation in south east Asia and with what's coming up behind them it is not beyond the realms of possibility that Malaysia could well be the first team from the region to qualify for a World Cup in the modern era.
But it won't happen. Not while the game there is administered by a collection of Datuks whose knowledge of the game couldn't fill the head of a pin.
The FAM serve just one purpose. It gives the rest of us a jolly good laugh. But if I was on the inside, if I was a coach or player, I would have long left the constricting Malaysian football set up.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Reclaiming The Terraces!
Sengkang Punggol are crap. If they fell any lower they'd be in Malaysia. Success for them is not losing two straight games. A big name player usually has 17 letters in his first name.
But in at least one respect they are miles ahead of any other SLeague side. Not many teams have fans that keep a blog regularly updated. A Fish Out Of Water follows the trials and tribulations of the team from Hougang Stadium and it's a real labour of love.
There's alot of pain on their site as you would expect when you follow such a crap team but that, to me, is it what makes them stand out from the crowd. I love it that the crappy Dolphins have fans who care enough about their team's (lack of ) fortune to turn up every game expecting nothing, not being disappointed then writing about it.
It's the mentality that launched the fanzine movement in England back in the mid 80s.
Now a group of Manchester United fans have 'adopted' the Dolphins as their 'SLeague' team and are doing their best to create an English style atmosphere on the terraces.
Singapore football has been crying out for this type of support for yonks. Forget them stoopid ra ra rah and drum beats, seriously how do you think the players feel when they run on the pitch and hear songs like 'defend, defend'?
Starting is one thing. It will be interesting to how long it continues, (can't go tonight lah, Giggsy's last game lah), and also whether or not they are imitated by others.
Some Stag Nite
In the SLeague Tampines Rovers returned to the top of the SLeague after a good 2-0 victory over Gombak United. Goals from Imran Sahib and Benoit Croissant were enough.
In the Indonesia Cup former Stag broke the back of the net with his 20 yard strike as Arema brushed aside Persik 4-0 in the semi final at Delta Stadium, Sidoarjo.
Irfan, M Fackruddin and Rahmat Affandi scored the other goals in front of over 22,000 fans.
Arema will meet Sriwijaya in the Final on Sunday at the Manahan Stadium in Solo meaning that there will be no new name on the trophy. Arema won the first two, Sriwijaya won the last two.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Budgie now a Bunny
It ain't just the good lord that's what moves in mysterious ways. Footballers make moves that defy logic with a regularity than can only be good for their bank balances.
Blond haired Welshie Michael Byrne has made the move from Chonburi to Bangkok Glass. Chonburi who are second and regularly taste continental football have been switched for a corporate whose idea of tasting Asian glory is entering the Singapore Cup.
The Glass Bunny, why is it singular, are in 6th place 11 points behind the Sharks. Their problem has been inconsistency all season and if they need anyone you would imagine it would be a striker.
But maybe the move ain't about money or football. Maybe Byrne just compared Chonburi fans with Bangkok Glass fans...
Persipura v Sriwijaya 2-2 (Gerald Pangkali; Keith Kayamba) Sriwijaya win 3-1 on penalties
Sriwijaya reached their 3rd consecutive Cup Final coming from behind against their old foe Persipura. They will play either Persik or Arema in Sunday's final
Etoile v Sengkang Punggol 1-0 (Frederic Mendy)
Mendy's goal puts Etoile back on top of the SLeague in this narrow win which saw them have Daniel Nna red carded.
Lose three and you're out
Darko Jankovic has finally been announced as coach of Persib Bandung for next season. And, as a warm welcome to Indonesia, he has been told that if he loses three games at the start of the season he will be expected to quit.
So no pressure there then.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Singapore Cup Quarter Final Draw
SINGAPORE, 27 July 2010: The 2010 RHB Singapore Cup Quarter Final stage is set to kick off on 12 September, Sunday, with the Young Lions taking on Albirex Niigata in the opening match at the Jalan Besar Stadium. League Leaders Tampines Rovers will host Balestier Khalsa on 27 September, while League Cup winners Etoile FC will face Kitchee SC at the Queenstown stadium on 28 September.
In perhaps the most anticipated encounter, Singapore Cup debutants South Melbourne will take on last year’s finalist Bangkok Glass on 5 October followed by the return leg on 8 October, with both legs scheduled to be played at the Jalan Besar stadium.
RHB Singapore Cup Quarter Final Fixtures:
Young Lions vs Albirex Niigata S. (1st Leg)
Date: Sunday 12 September
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Albirex Niigata S. vs Young Lions (2nd Leg)
Date: Thursday 23 September
Venue: Jurong East Stadium
Tampines Rovers vs Balestier Khalsa (1st Leg)
Match No: 11
Date: Monday 27 September
Venue: Tampines Stadium
Etoile vs Kitchee (1st Leg)
Date: Tuesday 28 September
Venue: Queenstown Stadium
Balestier Khalsa vs Tampines Rovers (2nd Leg)
Date: Thursday 30 September
Venue: Toa Payoh Stadium
Kitchee vs Etoile (2nd Leg) - 'LIVE' Match
Date: Friday 1 October
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
South Melbourne vs Bangkok Glass (1st Leg)
Date: Tuesday 5 October
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Bangkok Glass vs South Melbourne (2nd Leg) - 'LIVE' Match
Date: Friday 8 October
Venue: Jalan Besar Stadium
Please also note that the following Great Eastern-YEO's S.League matches have been rescheduled due to the RHB Singapore Cup Quarter-Finals:
Match 184: Home United vs Balestier Khalsa (Clementi Stadium) will now be played on Monday 4 October 2010.
Match 178: Geylang United vs Sengkang Punggol (Jalan Besar Stadium) will now be played on Wednesday 29 September 2010.
Match 183: Woodlands Wellington vs Gombak United (Jalan Besar Stadium) will now be played on Wednesday 6 October 2010.
Thanks to regular contributor Bruce who is a keen fan of the A League...
A new trialist has emerged for the Wellington Phoenix as they look to complete their A-League squad roster ahead of the August 1st deadline.
Indonesian international striker Bambang Pamungkas will arrive in Wellington later this week.
Phoenix coach Ricki Herbert said Pamungkas has a big reputation in his home country as a bit of a pin-up boy. He is keen to try his luck overseas.
The Phoenix are set to sign Argentinean midfielder Roberto Carlos Canerjo and young Australian striker Mirjan Pavlovic to take their squad to 19 players.They must register a squad of 20 players by the start of August
COMMENT - I believe Rikki Herbert has observed Bambang close up when the New Zealand team played Indonesia a couple of years back. Not sure he is a pin up boy with all that means...
Bringing in the fans
Kuala Lumpur: In an attempt to help boost the average number of attendances in the domestic leagues, a one-day workshop for Ad-hoc Committee for Professional Football was held at the AFC Headquarters on Monday.
Representatives from the English Premier League (EPL), English side Fulham FC, J-League, Vietnam League, Qatar League, former Asian champions from Japan, Urawa Reds and Gamba Osaka, and 2003 ACL winners Al Ain from the UAE, shared their marketing and sales strategies with AFC’s Member Associations. (And where were Singapore with their much lauded strategic plan? I'm sure the Premier League and everyone would just love the idea of free tickets and ice cream as teasers to tempt fans through the turnstiles!)
At the outset, AFC President Mohamed Bin Hammam said it was a chance to exchange experiences among the Asian countries, leagues and clubs and also between other confederations, especially Europe.
“Professionalism will remain a priority for AFC in the coming years,” said Bin Hammam. “The presidents of the MAs are also trying to enhance the role of professionalism in their respective countries but there is still a long way to go.(Ain't that the truth)
“We are proud of what we have achieved in the last four years but this is just the beginning and a first step in a thousand mile journey,” he said.
“Changing the mentality is never an easy task and it will encounter resistance but step by step we are going to achieve this goal, especially if we have a model to follow.
“The English Premier League is a good model to follow because of their reach, fans, sponsors, TV, etc.” (And sheer naked greed)
EPL’s Director of Sales and Marketing, Richard Masters gave a presentation on the Premier League’s model while Fulham’s Sales Director, Olly Dale highlighted the club’s marketing and promotional strategies.
Establishment of a fan base and community programmes, fan service and hospitality in the stadium, marketing and promotion to increase the brand value of the league, customer research and management and ticketing strategies and sales methods were some of the topics discussed during the workshop.
Update - For your information, Singapore was represented by some gals from the FAS Marketing department, together with the FAS General Secretary. I heard they had a rather lively discussion with the rest of them about attendances and why somethings work in Singapore and not others.
Thanks for the correction!
Persipura v Sriwijaya
Tonight sees the first Indonesia Cup semi final between Persipura, losing finalists at the last three attempts, and Sriwijaya, winners of the last two.
And while the other two semi finalists, Arema and Persik, fret about outstanding ages and where they will be next season these two just seem to plod along in their relentless way. Indeed having four players charged after disturbances with fans and announcing a new coach you get the impression that for Sriwijaya these are nowt but minor hiccups and not game changing scenarios.
Persipura are a machine. I can't remember the last time they lost, just three defeats during the whole ISL and you get the impression that had they been able to use their Mandala Stadium for the whole campaign they would have been crowned champions. There's an unrelenting feel of power and pace with the Papua boys that is hard for other ISL teams to handle. Wasn't a problem though for other Asian sides as they were roundly thumped in the Asian Champions League.
It's going to be a funny day for Sriwijaya coach Rahmad Darmawan. Being replaced by Ivan Kolev he has guided the Laskar Wong Kito (Our People's Army) to three trophies in the last two seasons and, in 2005, he led Persipura to the old style Liga Indonesia.
Despite their recent success neither side has really caught the neutral's imagination. Football in Indonesia is very tribalist and Sriwijaya, despite their nomadic past which has seen them play in Jakarta and Solo when known as Persijatim, are seen as the team of South Sumatra just as Persipura carry the flag for Papua. People support them because it's where they come from, gee that's an interesting notion, and they have not been able to cross that divide and become, for want of a better word, sexy in the manner of Arema.
Of course not being on Java helps. Or hinders. Indonesia at times seems like a Greater Java and with most of the national media based here the only time you hear about what goes on on other islands is when there is an earthquake or a riot when news channels broadcast grainy images filmed by a mobile phone.
May not be the biggest crowd in the world tonight at the Delta Stadium in Sidoarjo but there are enough subplots to keep it interesting as the two most sucessful clubs in recent history go toe to toe.
The Bambang Pamungkas Song
Forget Paul the German cephalopod picking World Cup winners. He's got a fifty fifty chance and with eight arms it's difficult to go wrong. Anyway could Paul have predicted that Greg Nwokolo would have gone to Portugal or that Persiba's Adrian trinidad would have had a spell in Perth?
'Course he couldn't. He's a bloody octopus, not a fortune teller.
Nope, if you wanna look into the future then it's simple. Check the stats for this website! See where people are coming from and why!
And the last couple of days have seen an abnormal number of visitors from Australia googling Bambang Pamungkas and the A League!
Does it mean the Persija striker is heading downunder once his contract expires here? Good question. As was pointed out yesterday by one commentator here he has said on his Twitter that he won't discuss his future until everything has been decided and that is fair enough. Better that than what happens year in, year out at Arsenal where players like Adebayor and Hleb simply wallowed in the headlines their 'will I, won't I' antics attracted.
For what it's worth I think he should go and I said so several months back. It would raise the profile of Indonesian football and he would be a wonderful ambassador for his country. He's the Gary Lineker of Indonesia which I appreciate may not always seem a compliment.
Of course he won't make decisions based purely on improving international relations. He will make a decision, and that includes staying with Persija for remember this is conjecture with some googlomics, based upon what is best for him and his family.
Anyway media whore that I am I have put together a short clip of the man with his adoring fans the Jakmania singing his praises after yet another goal. The Bambang Pamungkas Song can be found on Jakarta Casual TV as can an interview I did with him several months ago.
Persijap have finally announced their coach for next season. It is Portuguese Alves da Silva Teixeira Divaldo. Never heard of him either.
Why can't Indonesian football build on anything?
Back in 2006 PSIS had a good season coming close to winning the Liga Indonesia as it was then known. But instead of using that season as a stepping stone the team was allowed to fall apart and PSIS now lie in the second tier Premier League with fans being told to forget about any promotion hopes.
The following season it was the turn of PSMS and Deltras. Management failed to capitalise on the good work done and guess what? They got relegated.
Now I'm not suggesting Arema will get relegated next season. But it does seem the slap dash approach to football club management in these islands may claim another victim.
Which is a long winded way of introducing this week's article in the Jakarta Globe!
Monday, July 26, 2010
Woodlands Wellington v Beijing Guoan 0-1 (Zhang Ye)
Thai Premier League
Sisaket v Army 0-1 (Tatree Singha)
Samut Songkram v Buriram PEA 0-0
Bangkok Glass v BEC Tero 2-2 (Chatree Chimtalay, Wichaya Dechmitr; Wuttichai Tathong, Naret Kapkraikeow) 4,230
Bangkok United v Police United 0-4 (Surapong Tamwongsa, Felipe Ferriera, Pichet In-Bang 2)
TOT v TTM Phichit 1-3 (Georgi Tsimakuridze; Narong Jansaywek, OG, Valci Junior) 1,520
Raj Navy Rayong v Pattaya United 1-1 (Wuttichai Asuchiwan; Kengne Ludovick) 3,363
Thai Port v Osotsapa 1-1 (Mario Cesar Da Silva, Cleiton Silva) 3,445
Chonburi v Muang Thong United 0-0 12,180
Da Nang v Ninh Binh 1-1 (Merlo; Ngoc Huy)
HAGL v Navibank Sai Gon 0-1 (Opara)
Hoa Phat v Hai Phong 4-3 (Isaac, Timothy Anjembe (3); Lazaro (2), Victor)
Thanh Hoa v Khanh Hoa 3-2 (Xuan Hop, Bao Khanh, Mauro; Agostinho, Nogues)
DT Long An v Nam Dinh 1-0 (Antonio)
SLNA v Dong Thap 2-0 (Quang Tinh, Trong Hoang)
Persijap still consider Valle
Persijap Jepara discussed a new coach at a meeting last week and remain open to French coach Patrick Valle, currently with SLeague side Etoile. A further meeting later this week will consider his application as well as others.
Changing the guard in Malang?
Arema are undisputed top dogs in Malang. They have the glamour and the passion that could turn them into an Indonesian Celtic or Liverpool. But off the field they're in more of a mess than my spare room.
OK the coach and players have kept an Indonesia Cup campaign going in very difficult circumstances but none know where they will be come the start of the next ISL in September!
Compare that with cross city rivals Persema. Getting by on a small budget and smaller crowds Persema surprised many people at the start of the last season with a series of gutsy displays and a willingness to mix things up.
However coach Subangkit was eased out and while ISL safety was assured they impressed less and like so many teams sorely needed a striker to score regularly.
Under new coach Timo Scheuneumann has got the bulk of his team out training already while at the same time sniffing out new players.
A surprise addition could be former Arema and Sriwijaya wide man Arif Suyono. In front of goal Timo is hoping a couple of imports will be able to rectify last season's big failing. Daniel Wansi and Ngon Mamoun are expected to arrive at the end of this month.
Now on Jakarta Casual TV
Finally uploaded an interview with Persija Supporters Club Chairman Danang Ismartani about just what is involved in moving 1000 Jakmania across Java. Check out Jakmania On Tour
Sunday, July 25, 2010
Teerathep to Chonburi?
Just a couple of years ago Teerathep Winothai could no wrong. He was widely tipped to 'make it' beyond the limiting and limited ASEAN shores and his move to Belgian side Lierse seemed to be the first step. After all if an untalented buffoon like Emmanuel Eboue can make the move from there to Arsenal then someone with Leesaw's talent should find it a breeze. Albeit with some hard work.
But it never panned out and he returned to Thailand and joined the high paying Muang Thong United revolution.
Now it seems he can't even forge a starting place there and it is an open secret that his services have been made available to a number of teams in the region. And no-one has bit.
He has been tipped for greatness since his early days and spent time with both Crystal Palarse and nEverton as a youth.
Stories linking him to Chonburi may just be tongue in cheek ahead of today's meet between the two Thai heavyweights but do seem to point to a greater worry. And that is that Teerathep is not going to fulfill that potential.
The guy is 25 now and, no disrespect to Chonburi, if he was mustard clubs would be queuing up to sign him. They're not. Instead there's talk linking him with a swap deal with Michael Byrne.
Roberts frets about Yongki
I've been singing, well ok it's the internet I've been writing about Persik Kediri's young striker Yongki Aribowo for some time now and even recently made him my Jakarta Casual Player of the Year, an award that I'm sure he rushed to add to his profile.
Now, ahead of next week's Indonesia Cup semi final Arema coach Robert Alberts has identified the 20 year old striker as the player to watch.
It's a game I'm looking forward to immensely. Yongki's two goals against Persija in the first leg of the quarter final kept his team in the competition and while there was a touch of luck about them he had to be in the first place.
Benny's days are numbered?
Following Persija's elimination from the Indonesia Cup, coach Benny Dollo will spend the days anxiously pondering his future while the club's management do a complete assessment of the season just gone.
Despite the investment in big name players as well as some old hands who have been with the club many years they were unable to find any consistency, especially in the second half of the season, to mount any kind of title challenge.
As ever with Persija the problems were as much off the field as on. Before the campaign even began some guy turned up offering untold millions to take control of the club but when it came to 'show us the cash' nothing happened.
By the time a coaching team was installed most players had already found clubs and Persija were left filling their ranks with bit part players from other teams.
Then of course there was an inability to stage home games. Venues were changed at the last minute, one game was cancelled minutes before kick off. The club are a lesson in crisis management and what not to do and you get the feeling nothing will change any time soon.
The story that Dollo's position would come under scrutiny, despite the supposed safety net of a two year contract, isn't new. What is interesting is that it has taken so long to break. I first heard rumours when I was last in Bangkok and then was asked about it in Singapore. Someone who has dealings with Persija management confirmed it all a few weeks back.
To be fair to Benny he didn't actually take control of the team until his contract with the national team had ended and so it could be argued he wasn't involved in all the decisions taken before then.
Questions though could be asked about the signings he made during the transfer window. Firman Utina aside both Serge Emaule and Papa Toure failed to impress anyone and didn't significantly bring anything new to the team who still played like they have done the last few seasons.
Singapore crowd above 5,000 shock
Official SLeague are now treated with derision following revelations that numbers include tickets given to people who don't actually turn up. Last night saw over 5,000 fans pile into Jalan Besar Stadium to see relegated English team Burnley take on a Singapore Select in the final game of the Clarets' Singapore tour.
It's an English thing of course. No bugger there wants to go and see their own teams but send over an English team filled with unknowns and people turn out in force.
From Burnley's point of view I'm glad the tour turned out well. Played three, won three, scored 11, conceded none. But it also seems the low key and accessible nature of the tour may have won them a few friends.
Which is all well and good but what about Singapore football? Fans turn out to see Burnley purely because they're English? Everything English is so much better than what's in their own backyard?
It's an attitude that continues to baffle me.
Been idle the last couple of days courtesy of a particularly painful kidney stone. Little bastard has now gone leaving my bowels a lot freer and my wallet a lot lighter. I did however find time to answer some questions from Dale for his Chonburi FC blog.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Cambodian facts n stats
Not done too much about the Cambodian League recently so here, courtesy of Roubroum, is the latest league table