Lions show fighting spirit against Azzurri FC

fighting spiritSome games are meant never to be remembered and some others you’ll never forget. Last Saturday game was one of those… the kind of game that seals the fighting spirit of a team. The playing conditions were almost impossible due to heavy rain conditions which started on Friday. As you can see from the pictures, it was kind of apocalyptic throughout the entire game. The opponent was Azzurri FC and they were very motivated to give us a hard time.

In the first few minutes, both teams realized that the ball wouldn’t roll and would get stuck in the mud. The lions got a very early lead with an easy tip-in for Azz when the Azzurri tried to defend but forgot the field conditions. However, the Azzurri started to put pressure with the wind in their back and took advantage of a defensive hesitation of the Lions and scored the equalizer. Suddenly the Azzurri smelled blood… While we still tried to play football on this impossible pitch, the Azzurri figured out that it was all about fighting spirit, hard tackles & long balls into the box.  They got their reward on a good counter-attack and took a 1-2 lead just before half time. With the rain pouring and knowing that only a win would do for the Championship, the only option left for the last 45 minutes was to fight until we would drop dead!

All the Azzurri could do in the second half was trying to defend their lead. The lions kept pushing forward and got several corners and freekicks. Fresh legs game from our bench which was a big help in this game as the pitch was so heavy. On a free-kick from Azz flying directed into the box, Charles managed to skit the ball in the top corner despite showing his back to the net. While Charles’ celebration lasted until the next day, we were all thinking that he doesn’t score a lot of goals but as long as he scores important ones like that, we are happy ūüėČ Now our fighting spirit was even more lifted and it was like the lions were smelling blood… On another brilliant free-kick from Azz, instead of crossing into the box, he played it wide to Erwin who didn’t hesitate to score the winner in front of his family watching.

When the final whistle was there it was the end of one of the best 45 minutes display of fighting spirit lions management team ever witness… All that was left was a happy feeling and one step closer to the SIFL title! Credit goes to the Azzurri as well who gave it all and never gave up. After the game, Dani checked his new activity device connected to his iPhone and it stated that he ran 40km during the game, we wonder where it was made‚Ķ‚Ķ.most likely in China!

Now we have three games left and we will focus on them one by one! Our next game will be versus the Krauts on May 10th if we continue to work hard at the training, keep our fighting spirit & focus we can make another step in the right direction!


On Sunday the Veteran Lions played under the same hard condition versus a Japanese team called Super 48. The Lions were low on numbers but managed a solid 7-1 win helped by 4 Lions U17 players who played excellently. Jamie our goalie on that day managed to score from a corner in the last minute of the game. The cross came from  Yuito our 15-year-old Japanese player right on Jamie’s head. Great way to end a game and great to see Jamie score after his long struggle with his knee operation.


It’s good to be a Lion!




Xiamen Tournament on Sat. June 21st 2014

We have been invited to defend our title we won last year, at the Xiamen Tournament on June 21st 2014. We will go with max 10 players, so please register asap at:

The plan is to fly there on Friday June 20th evening and come back on Sunday June 22nd evening.



Lions clinch their 9th SPL Championship Title !


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We did it again ! This time was special for many reasons !


We were up against the Marlins who for the occasion decided to play an defensive strategy and made sure always 9 players were behind the ball. All though we had most of the possession during the first half it was hard for us to find the break through. Yes we had shot but most were off target or not with enough power. Anyway our patience like we have showed during the whole season paid off as 10 minutes before half time a perfect cross from Joel thru the middle touched the hairs of the Marlin defender but put Azz in a one on one with the Marlins goalie. It was a beautiful goal and one to remember ! In the second half the Marlins started to play better and we got a few tired legs but all our substitutions came out very strong and in the end that gave us the edge over the Marlins. Joel had the chance to finish the game after a great pass from Azz with 5 minutes to go but the moment he shot he knew it would go just wide !


The final whistle and an important one as we were the SPL Champions season 2013-14 ! With still two more games to go the job was done ! We have had an incredible run and it’s a good time to talk about it now / we didn’t lose a game in the SPL since December 2012 ! That’s an incredible record as each week we managed to put a strong and motivated team out on the field and all the time we kept our fighting spirit alive and we worked for each other as a team. This season so far we won 19 games and drew only one by all means that is an absolute SPL record ¬†and still unfinished !


I like to thank every single Lions player who has contributed to our success and hope we can continue this achievement for many years to come. Lets win our final two games as well and keep training to improve ourselves !! It was the Lions 9th SPL title in the 11 years of SPL History ! A Big thank you to all the Marlin players and their coach Steve who showed great spirit and never gave up a fight and give us the guard of honor after the game ! Respect for them !


Cheers Happy Freek

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PS lets all focus on getting the SIFL title back to back as that will be an incredible achievement !


GO LIONS GO !!!!!!!!!!!

Lions out of the Hebiguchi Cup !



We had our semi-final in the Hebiuchi Cup last Saturday ! The field conditions were hard due to severe down poor on Friday night as there we many wet spots on the field ! However of course that is the same for both teams so no excuses here ! ¬†We tried to control the game as Reunited our opponents were dangerous on the counter attack with their fast forwards!¬† They got a few opportunities but failed to score and on the other side we had Erwin one on one with the goalie but missed as well / We had a few more changed but couldn’t score. It was a free kick which was saved by Dim but was run in by Steve who reacted fast than our defenders to give Reunited the lead. In the second half the Lions pushed for goals but were punished twice by the motivated Reunited players ! We got a goal back but all in vain as we lost well deserved to a motivated team ! Losing is part of the game of Football and its upto our players to respond to this and work hard to fix this !


On Saturday we play our all important game versus the Azzuri as a win will keep us strong into the SIFL title race !


We expect all Lions to come to training and the prepare for the most important game of the season !


Cheers Freek

Lions one step closer to the SPL Championship !



There was no game for the Sunday Lions but the competition was playing. The cowboys our only competitor left for the title race slipped up against Japan. The week before we had a tough game against Japan but got three points with a narrow 1-0 win. The Cowboys however lost 3-1 and with this result the gap between us is now 8 points with only 3 games left for the Lions and 4 fr the Cowboys.  We need a win against the Marlins to finish the job this coming Sunday. We expect all Lions family and friends to come and watch this game in Jinqiao 1400 kick off !!


The veterans were kicked out of the Cup tournament by Ireland. They struggled to have a full squad and were in the game until the last 20 minutes with 1-1 on the score board. Two unnecessary goals gave the Irish a 3-1 victory.


A few Lions and Young Lions put on their running boots this weekend ! Max our veteran was one of the 200 foreigners taking part in the North Korea half marathon  as it was open to foreigners for the first time ! Hope he will make it back and we are looking forward to his stories ! A few young Lions took part in the Jinqiao 8k race and Rick (15) came out fastest clinching spot no 40 out of 4000 runners ! Good to know we have a fast Lion in the making !


All in All a positive weekend for the Lions !


Lets prepare well for the Marlins game and we want everybody to come to the training !


Cheers Freek

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Lions beat Shooters 6-2 to stay on top of SIFL !


We had a big game this weekend as we played our old rival the Shooters.

John Jofre the Shooters legend was even flown in for the occasion to give them support. Our game plan on the rainy day was to pressure them from the start and get the first goal and to make them tired by let them chase our short passes. The first plan didn’t work as the shooters took an early lead with a header by Zippy.

Lions responded well by header from Francois after a corner and after that it was game on !

Lions defenders do score a lot this season and that’s a good thing ! Azz scored the 2-1 after a good run from Allan. However Shooters got one back by Claus another Shooters legend. It was 2-2 half time and the problem was that we didn’t take our chances as we should be up with more. However in this game our bench made the difference as all the substitutes come on strong and fresh and all made an impact ! We got the help from the Shooters with an own goal to make it 3-2 after a corner kick. After that the Shooters started to get tired and in the last 20 minutes the game was decided with 3 goals from Azzedine and it could have been more. We have 4 games to go and next up will be the Azzuri in two weeks first we play the Hebeiuchi Cup semi final vs Reunited !

Lets all come to training and stay focused and improve our game week by week !

Cheers Freek

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SPL going into the final rounds !

Amigos’ and Amiga’s,



We had an interesting SPL Sunday with a few teams not being able to field a team due to the Qin Ming Holiday. The three games we had were all high intensity and entertaining. Especially at Century Park there was a large crowd of local people watching the SPL and Gremio got the great idea of holding a BBQ in the park right after their game. The decisive games are now around the corner whether your are at the top or in the middle or at the bottom of the league all teams can still fight for a better ranking or try to keep their current rank. Spring is the best time of the SPL season and its time to share the pleasure of playing football on the best pitches of Shanghai with your family and friends !


Gremio – Shanghai 2000 4-4


A big crowd was watching this game and they got value for money ! Some of the Gremio players arrived late due to traffic and Shanghai 2000 took advantage and started stronger. They took a 1-2 lead in the first half in the second half Gremio realized they needed a win and started to push forward however Shanghai 2000 scored a beauty to take a further lead 1-3.

Gremio didn’t give up here and got a goal back 2-3. It didn’t seem to be Gremio’s day as one of the Shanghai 2000 players thought he was Beckham or Rooney as he scored from the middle line ! Standing Ovation from the home crowd ! No it was all or nothing for Gremio and with goals from Zhu Biao and SPL top scorer Francesco they tied the game to 4-4. Gremio thought they had won it when they scored from a deep cross but it was ruled off side.


Lions – Japan 1-0


Less entertaining match mainly due to the lack of goals. Credit for Japan as they held the Lions to a 0-0 draw in the first half. They came close to score with the too fast Japanese striker running at the young Lions keeper Bryce with a bullet train speed but Bryce without fear stopped him and the ball ! The lions managed to get a scrappy goal and nobody was celebrating as they knew they should have scored more goals than that one however in the end the got the three points and a clean sheet and it proved to be important.


Marlins – Pistolera Bulls 2-3


Another high intensity entertaining SPL match ! The Marlins started stronger and seemed to be more awake but in the 15th minute a cross from Stoyan ended on the feet of Stas their winger who shot straight over the Marlins keeper.

Ten minutes later the Bulls got a free kick on the edge of the box and Kun managed to score the 0-2 hitting the ball over the wall into the net. The Marlins got a goal back by a penalty converted by Mcgoo to make it 1-2 at half time. Marlins came out stronger in the second  half as the knew only a win would do to stay in the title race ! However Kun of the Bulls had other ideas he slalomed thru the midfield and shot a torpedo in the left corner,

1-3 Steve the Marlins manager commented it was fantastic goal ! The Marlins didn’t give up here and got a goal back they pushed until the very end and were denied by the cross bar and an open chance for Jamie. The Bulls took all three points in the end of a good game of football !


Sunday we have 5 SPL game and are back on the Jinqiao field as the seeding was done !


1200-1400 Pistolera Bulls – Super 48 at Jinqiao


1400-1600 Marlins – Flamenkos at Jinqiao


1200-1400 ERS – Galacticos at Waigaoqiao


1300-1500 Cowboys – Japan at Century Park


1500-1700 Shanghai 2000 – SFL FC at Century Park


Enjoy the games and for the ones running the 8k in Jinqiao try to stay ahead of Kevin !


Cheers Freek SPL President on behalf of the SPL committee !



Lions beat Japan and see the competition drop out !


It was a holiday weekend and fantastic weather ! The Century Park was packed with spectators who first saw Gremio dropping points to the home team of Shanghai 2000. We were up next versus Japan and our first half was not good as the Japanese were more motivated to get a result agains the Lions. We let them play and dictate the game with their fast short passes. Our best chance was a one on one but the final touch was not good enough. There were hard words at half time as we are in the final part of the SPL Championship and we need to get all three points. In the second half we played better and started to dictate the game but the Japanese were still dangerous on the counter attack. Somehow they managed to slice thru the middle a couple of times and we must give them credit for that. It was our young goalie Bryce who saved us when a fast and furious Japanese attacker come on him all by himself ! Yes we managed the goal we needed don’t ask how and it was the first time I have not seen anybody celebrating as knew we wanted and need to score more.

It stayed 1-0 and sometimes you get a game that things don’t work as you like but than you still get the result in this case a clean sheet and three points. It proved to be valuable as both Gremio and the Marlins dropped points and are out of the title race !! Gremio drew with Shanghai 2000 4-4 and Marlins lost versus the Bulls 3-2.

The SPL standing is looking good now for the Lions :

1)      Lions played 19 with 55 points +68 goal difference

2)      Gremio played 19 with 45 points + 49 goal difference

3)      Cowboys played 17 with 44 points + 64 goal difference

4)      Marlins played 15 with 33 points + 59 goal difference


Cowboys play Japan next week and we have a rest before we play the Marlins the week after !

Keep training hard and stay focused until the end !

Cheers Freek

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