For our SIFL return 1st game, our senior team had an early 09:00 kick-off but luckily all players were on time and we had plenty of time for the warm-up. We had a nice mix of young and older players and Juliano in the goal. Right at the kick-off, we noticed that Jason was missing and he was supposed to start on the wing and we were a bit worried but in the end, he went to the toilet for a small emergency. Kevin B., fresh from the deck, took his place.
We started well with a lot of aggression and hunger however after 5 minutes we got another blow as Tyron got a knee placed in his upper leg and it was game over for him… Julia took his position. After 10 minutes we lost our play and started to make mistakes in build-up passes as well we gave several corners away but luckily Juliano stood firm in his box. After a slip up in our defense, we gave them a pass to score and they took the 1-0 lead. We tried to get back in the game but didn’t create much so we used the half time talk to put all right for the next 45 minutes to turn around the game.
It worked as we upped the tempo and we very dangerous from the flanks with the upcoming Masa and George. Jason back in the squad did well using his speed and strength and was fouled in the box. Patrick stood up and shot left to make the equalizer it was a boost for the team and we sensed we could take them on now. It was a superb goal from our side with a very good ball from defender Kevin in the feet of George on the left who fulls speed passed the ball into the upcoming Dan who nicked it in perfectly. 2-1 and we were hungry for more and it was Masa-san running on the right all the way and his cross in was tipped in by Hiro-san who was alert when the Anzacs didn’t defend well. We could and should have scored more and been lucky when they hit the crossbar with a header at the end. Unfortunately, we lost Dan in the end who tripped on the field with no player near him and damaged his ankle. We wish him well and a speedy recovery.
It was a good team performance in the second half that give us the 1-3 win for our SIFL return. Well done to all the substitutes who came in well and helped us clinch the victory. Well done to all the youth players especially George and Yu Xuan who played like a grown-up man. Training on Tuesday and the October break holiday ahead of us but we will continue to train over the holiday to be ready for the Marlins game on October 17 at 15:00.
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It was our 2nd friendly match to prepare our return into the Shanghai International Football League (SIFL) after a few seasons break! While the weather was slightly better than a few weeks ago, we had a thin and very young squad against the Voodoo team. For that game, our opponent was much larger and mature in-depth… To be mentioned as well that the Voodoo team has become one of the top tier SIFL contenders since our last game back in 2017.
Within the first 5 minutes, we created two great goal scoring opportunities. Unfortunately, we missed the chances… as it goes in football if you don’t score the opponent will and that’s what Voodoo did when we conceded a clear penalty tripping one of their player for their 1st occasion. At the first break (3 x 30mn), the talk was not pretty as we were playing too soft against this strong and physical kind of opponent.
In the second 30 minutes, we played much better at taking possession, making 3-4 passes combinations in a row which resulted in a few scoring opportunities… Of course, they were dangerous on the counters and our keeper Juliano kept us in the game.
In the last 30 minutes, we knew it will be hard for us as we only had 1.5 valid sub standing but we didn’t give up the fight… On a great counter, Dan our striker who knew that the Voodoo team goalie was out of his goal most of the match took his chance and scored a perfect equalizer.
To be fair, we would have probably deserved to lose this game as Voodoo pushed hard in the last few minutes hitting the post twice… Anyway, it stayed 1-1 before the penalty session that was decided before the game. we scored them all with Philipp, Freek, Julia, Tyron & Juliano while Juliano stopped one of theirs.
We were happy afterward as we got a lot of positives from this game especially with so many youngsters into the team and many seniors missing… Let’s train hard and get more commitment to this new season.
On this day of early September our youth team was up against YKFC; a good local team that likes to play on fast counters. For this youth friendly game, Both teams agreed to play 3 x 30 minutes.
In the first 30 minutes against the wind, we tried to build up with passing combo’s but we didn’t find each other quick enough… Also, we were not concentrating enough on the back which caused some problems. However, we did take the lead with a great far shot from Julia flying over the keeper.
In the second 30 minutes with the win in our back, we got it right and give a lot of pressure to YKFC who struggled to come out of their half. We got plenty of opportunities to extend the lead with a close shot from Ryan and Jason hitting the post. Yu Xuan our goalie had two great saves to keep our clean sheet. With one minute to go, YKFC didn’t play their goal kick well and we took the advantage with an easy goal from Jason.
In the last 30 minutes, our aim was to keep the clean sheet and score another goal. YKFC was pushing more and more to get back into the game and credit to them they didn’t give up. They got their reward with a long-range shot helped by the wind to go over our goalie. David got unlucky when he hit the ground with his head and we took our time to get him back on his feet and luckily he was OK after that. With a few minutes left Jason got a free-kick against him and reacted to his opponent in a bad manner which was totally unacceptable and we were left with no choice to take him off.
After the final whistle, all was good and we took a team picture together. Of course, we have a lot of things to improve and that’s why youth friendly game are meant for. Training is also very important and we have one coming right away this Thursday.