Legends pick their SPL V trophy at the end season tournament

end season tournamentDespite the hot weather (32 degrees),  we had a great setting on the grass field of Jinqiao with 17 teams participating in the SPL & SPL V end season tournament ! After a busy month of May with 4 consecutive games in a row, it was finally time to relax. With a small squad, our target was still to win this 7 aside end season tournament. Alex helped out as keeper and Max made his comeback after his ruptured his achilles last year.

First match was a good warming up with a win but we blew it in the second match as England scored on its only and single opportunity… While we pushed forward for the equilazer, the ball didn’t want to get in and we lost 0-1. Despite we won 2-1 the last game of the group stage, England ended top of the group and later won the tournament !

All was fine as the ice cold beer tasted extremely well after the matches and we were ready for the price ceremony ! The last cup of the day was for our legends with the SPL V championship cup ! We took a lot of nice pictures with our families/friends and ended up at Pistolera for more drinks & margaritas ! Great way to end a Great Season !

 

Cheers
Happy Freek

Legends close the season championship with a win

season championshipLast Sunday was the last game of the season and we wanted to end the season championship with a win ! The heat was not helping us as the Japanese got a good squad (especially in defense) and we knew they could run for hours.

[ SPL VETERAN ] Shanghai Lions FC 1 – 0 Japan FC

We started very well in the first 10 mn passing the ball around quickly and making the Japanese players to run after it ! However our finishes were not surgical enough and all our balls ended up in the Japanese goalie hands. Soon we started looking for difficult options and lost our pace. Japan was sitting back and waited for a counter chance. Our golden moment came when Japan attacked and we quickly countered and put Bob free on the keeper able to choose either side of him but he choose the keeper whom deflected the ball on Fred who hit the post.

In the 2nd quarter, our focus was to score from set pieces (especially corners) where we have massive potential at the second post with Laid, Fabi, Francois & James but we missed to get the balls to them… Spirit was going down, heads were going down and Japan got the best chance to take the lead with a perfect cross flying over Laid but Yamada missed the ball for a few missing hair ! 0-0 at half time so more angry faces…

In the third 20 mn we struggled as we lost our passing game completely and Japan played more forward and got very close to scoring but twice Masa-san cleared from the goal line after Ben was already passed !

In the last 20 mn we made it clear its the last 20 minutes of the season and we need to win this match and we played 3 in the back with Fabi, Laid, Masand and putted 4 players upfront. We got several opportunities and the relief came from a perfect corner (finally…) to set up Laid and or James for the final header and James just did that ! In the end the victory felt good especially the cleansheet.

 

Well done Legends and now lets celebrate the season championship and party next Sunday for the end of season tournament & ceremony.

 

Cheers
Freek

Legends clinch the SPL Veteran title with a 7-1 win over Scotland

SPL Veteran titleWe all knew before the game that a win will help us secure our 2nd SPL Veteran title in a row ! In the meantime, it was also clear that Scotland would not be easy and would use any kind of tactics according to what they see as rigth or wrong ! We started with a solid defense where Sylvain took the role of “new daddy” James on the right with Laid & Rommie in the center. As we couldn’t find anybody as left defender we had no choice to put Gwen there.

[ SPL VETERAN ] Shanghai Lions FC 7 – 1 Shanghai Scottish

Our 1st goal was great with a good run of Imad and easy finish from Mamdouh. In the 2nd 20 minutes we kept passing the ball aournd and it worked as the Scottish were running after the ball and ovious were losing energy along the way. With Kevin & Terao in the midfield it was only getting worse for Scotland… Imad scored the 2nd & Bob converted a penalty for the 3rd goal.

In the 3rd 20 minutes, Fred came on with his reborn knees & yellow socks… He scored the 4-0 with a super slow shot hardly seen on the fields nowadays but he has his own theory about his brilliant strike. He soon scored one more but it was ruled off-side. Scotland started to implode running out of battery and Fred got his second after a simple assist from Bob. We kept our firework for the last with Nico as right back coming forward and blast his shot in the roof of the net and the icing on the cake came from Tomas with great shot over the keeper. Champagne was ready and we did give a consolation goal to the Scotts as they kept trying very hard to score despite the score line !

With this win, the SPL Veteran title is ours with one match to go as Emerald are now too far behind ! It was a great result with 10 wins and only 1 loss ! Its a great achievement to be able to have a motivated team each time. Our strong point for this season 2018/2019 has been our consistency on the pitch… Always try being in control of the match and focus from the back to the front !

 

Thank you Pascal for helping out a few times and lets enjoy our last match next Sunday. The end of the season tournament is in 2 weeks. Let’s all come and get our trophy !

 

Well done Legends !
Freek

Legends take “le bouillon” vs. Emerald

bouillonLast Sunday, our legends took the “bouillon” in the derby vs. old rival Emerald. By the activity on Wechat, we could see earlier in the week that both teams were very motivated with this game. While our legends managed bringing-in a good looking team of 15 players, Emeralds were even more with 20+ players. As a starting line, we had Pascal in the goal; FL, Fabi, Matze & James in defense; Imad, Sylvain & Kevin in the middle & Nico, Fred & Mamdouh upfront. As for the squad formation we were in 4-3-3 and Emeralds in 4-2-2.

[ SPL VETERAN ] Shanghai Lions FC 0 – 5 Emerald

In the first few minutes of the 1st quarter, well this was hell for our legends with Emerads putting a huge pressure on Lions defense/midfield. As a matter of fact, Emerald was more playing in 4-1-3-2 with 2 arrows on the flank (Fafa and another young running man). These 2 guys were acting as piston with their No 10 feeding them with good balls… While Emerald was putting intensity and accuracy, we on the other side were struggling both to keep or pass the ball.

On a long ball from Emerald, 2 opponents went for the ball and served Emerald stricker (3m offside) who came to finish Pascal on a 1 on 1. Good call from the referee… it was indeed the Lion player who touched/gave the ball. Few minutes later, Emeralds scored another beautiful header from their No 10 on a corner. On the last 5 minutes, Lions started to play better and even the game. 2-0 for Emeralds on the 1st quarter.

On the 2nd quarter, we decided to re-organize a little bit and played with 3 defenders. Immediately, it got better and we got 2 occasions to score with Bob. A pity for us as it ended as the only and last opportunity coming back into the game…

The 3rd quarter started on a lower intensity. While both teams were kind of neutralizing each other, Emeralds got a freekick 30m from our goal. Surprisingly, it was Emerald’s goalkeeper who came to try his luck. While we were already saying that it was a chance to score in counter, the keeper deflected an amazing shoot who went straight in the skylight of Lions’ goal… Not much to do on that and really beautiful goal !!! Afterwards, we learnt that Emerlad’s player is the goalkeeper’s trainer of Shanghai Greenland Shenhua F.C. 3-0 down at the end of the 3rd quarter.

In the 4th quarter, our heads went down. Indeed, we lost the steam, composure and organisation pushing forward and got punished with 2 more goals … To complicate things further, Pascal got hurt on his shin but Bob came as subsitute with style… 3 amazing saves to preserve what could still be preserved.

 

Le “bouillon” for our legends with 0-5 as final score. Let’s be honest, Emerals were better than us in all aspects… Fitter, faster, stronger,  younger with their 2 wingers… Now, let’s keep in mind that we still have everything in our hands to be champion. With the 3 more games to come, if we win 2 we’ll be champion.

 

Cheers
FL

Legends seal their 8th consecutive win in veteran league

It was an early kick off at 09:00 and actually we liked it as there is not much traffic early in the morning and after the match you have plenty of time left to relax on Sunday. We had to play the last match of our SPL V first round. In order to stay on top of the veteran league, only a win would do.

 

[ SPL Veteran ] Shanghai Lions FC 3 – 0 Wellington Champs

We were playing the Wellington Champs, a new team who recently joined the veteran league. Surely aware our Lions’ scoring reputation, they decided to park the bus with 10 players defending on their own half… We started well keeping possession and try to keep the field wide as in the middle it was too crowded to play. We opened the score after a good header from Bob. However, Wellington didn’t change their strategy being 1-0 down. Shortly after, we were denied a penalty when Tomas was launched into Orbit by a Wellington defender… Everybody saw it except the referee. Justice came by a good run and finish from Gwen to make it 2-0. In the third 20 minutes we got plenty of opportunities but failed to score. A fine run and finish from Tomas made the final score 3-0.

veteran leagueOur 8th consecutive win in the veteran league ! We have now 24 points with 28 goals scored and only 5 conceded.

 

In the 2nd veteran league round we will play Wellington, Japan, Emerald & Scotland to decide the Championship ! Lets go Legends !

 

Cheers
Freek

Lions legends beat Japan FC 2-0

It was a great Lions legends performance including Clement who left his place to Pascal coming out to support with some beers and Max who is still recovering from his operation have not missed a match from the side line ! We made a tactical plan to avoid being caught out by Japanese counters and their speed. The whole Scotland team stayed back to cheer for Japan as they were equal on points but we had this match to play.

With only Bob and Mamdouh upfront we made it hard for the Japanese to slice through our midfield and defense. Our second counter attack was perfect and easy finished by Bob.

In the next 20 minutes we tried to play the same as we knew that opportunities would come as we dominated the midfield with in super form Sylvain who claimed he was playing so well due to a strong dose of Baijiu ! We scored a great goal with several combinations and cool finish from Mamdouh.

In the third 20 we saw Kevin almost scoring by trying to shoot over the Japanese goalie who preferred to be always out of his box ! When we saw Jerome and Matze our in form central defenders limping off we quickly reorganized with James as a center back and later Arnaud as stopper.

It was good time to use all the substitutes we had in the last 20 with Mike causing the Japanese defenders to panic a few times and Freek almost scoring after a great run from Imad and a dutch move from the President but he saw his shot just be tipped out by the Japanese goalie in the far corner.

The Scottish left already when we went 1-0 up. Indeed we never let the Japanese shoot on target for 80 minutes and the clean sheet is great as we have the best defensive record and are still on top ! What I liked the most is that from the start until the end we had a positive attitude and kept focusing on the game !

 

Our next match will be next week against the new team Wellington Champs 900 AM so lets get ready NOW !

 

Cheers
Freek

Legends beat rival Emerald 4-1 to stay on top of the SPL V

SPL VIn this morning of SPL V match-day, it looked a bit dicey as pollution levels were at 200 when we woke up but soon the sun appeared and the sky was turning blue. After weeks of rain this was a welcome relieve for everybody. In the last few encounters against today’s opponent, the Emeralds, we struggled to play and beat them… Then, let’s say that we were all very motivated this time !

In the first 20 minutes, we had a small team at the start of the match but we played very disciplined and organized. Emeralds, on their side, decided to sit back and were waiting for a counter attack however our mid field and defense were working well together so that the Emeralds struggled to give the final pass. With Bob out wide and Mike in the middle on top we took a 1-0 lead after a good cross from Bob connected with Mike’s extended leg just enough to give the ball a little notch and roll in the goal ! Great start for the Legends !

In the second 20 mn, we decided to keep the team the same as they started so well but we failed to keep our positions in some cases and we started to fell in the “too much talking and less playing” mode. We did make the 2-0 after a great run of Masa-san where he was ready to score but got fouled at the edge of the box right in the middle. The keeper choose to defend the side of the wall and Bob put the ball at the other side.

In the third 20 mn, the game changed as the last defender of the Emerald got his second yellow after he blocked Masa-san to run through and we started to play the ball around which tired the Emerald players on the large Wellington pitch.

In the final 20 mn our intention was the clean sheet however we did let Emerald come back in the game after a few bad passes in row from our side we let Fafa score from close range. However 5 minutes later Tomas surprised the Emerald goalie with a well placed shot to make it 3-1. In the last minutes a cross from Bob ended up at Kevin at the far end and he scored with the help of an Emerald player to make the final score 4-1.

 

Great day for the Legends as this result allow us to stay on top of the SPL V. It was also great to see Matthieu flying over from France for this match. Well done Legends ! See you all at the training !

 

Cheers
Happy Freek

 

Xmas excess has to be paid cash when you are a legend

LegendJust 2 weeks after new year, we were playing England FC in SPL Veteran. As we all know it’s always hard after new year hard as Xmas excess has to be paid cash when you are a legend.

2-0 up in the 1st 20mn with England FC looking weak, we were put at the test in the 2nd 20mn as they brought on actual better players and we started to take it easy as it goes in football you get punished for that and england got a goal back and even came close to drew !

In the 3rd 20mn, our legends knew that we needed to step it up as england got their believe back and they thought that they could get something out of the match however we defended well. In the last 20mn we knew england would push forward. Thus, we played on the counter and finished it off with a great cross of Matze and perfect header by James which sealed the deal ! 3-1 win over England !

 

Good team effort every legend did his role ! Tuesday training restart 19:30 at Concordia !

Click here for the match statistics.

 

Cheers
Freek

Santa was not there for the legends

Shanghai Santa Football Cup

As a long lasting tradition, the legends were up again for the 2018 edition of the Shanghai Santa Football Cup. As 18 teams were involved this year, veterans were delocalized to a second venue at Wellington playground.

Earlier in the week, the squad looked fantastic rising our hope being the 1st Lions team to lift Santa’s trophy. Unfortunately, few late cancellations narrowed the squad to its diet limit. As the idea of the
Shanghai Santa Football Cup is not about winning but having fun, we realized that it was a chance to play football among ourselves for one last time in 2018. Then, led by captain Jerome, we putted our Santa hat and played with our brave hearts !

Lions Legends 0-0 Emerald B

For our 1st game of the day, we were facing Emerald B. Both teams seems a little rusty in their physical and mental preparation and the game ended up 0-0

Lions Legends 0-0 England

For our 2nd game, it was England FC at the menu with the same result…

Lions Legends 0-0 Wellington

For the 3rd game of the day, we were facing our local host of the day. With no mercy, Mike putted his Santa gear and scored a beautiful header as Christmas gift.

Lions Legends 0-1 Japan

For our last group game, only a win against Japan could let us go through the final.  We knew that we had to attack and this is what we did… Japan FC as fine harbour tactician waited for us and killed us on one of their few counter strike…

For the record, P/F FC won the trophee beating Japan FC 1-0 into final.

Great afternoon with great people ! We didn’t score much but we tried… Anyway, we had a great spirit today and good laugh ! Thank you all and merry Christmas !

Jerome A

Legends beat Shanghai Scottish FC and get on top of the league

Shanghai Scottish FCFor this top of the league game versus Shanghai Scottish FC, the pressure was on as the gaffer was in Holland for family purposes. The coach team of the day was Max & Fred, turnout was not going to be a problem, We play a well know french formation with two defending midfield just behind the forward line and Kevin as the orchestre.

The 1st quarter started very well and it was all about defense, Matze injured, we had to make a quick fix, we decided to put Rommie next to Laid in central defense, And what a combination, we played really good football and everyone worked hard, the Scot were top class, and they keep fighting

In the 2nd quarter we kept the same shape, we keep pushing and pushing, and the battle in midfield started to show, we gave so much and we just got one chance from a free kick that came very close from Laid. Then, we finally got our chance with an assist from Imad to Bob with a very clinical finish… The evian is obviously the best thing ever… 1-0

In the 3 & 4 quarter it was Pascal show, 3 great save in a space of 15 minutes… we could have easily been down 2 or 3 but he took is responsibility and the opponent just could not get trough. Very close to the end, it was Rommie who saved us just on the line… James did the same in the 3rd quarter also with a super power shot which ended up on his forehead…

 

What a spirit we had in the team with everyone ready to die for eachother and we just did that !

Click herfor the match statistics.

 

Cheers
Max

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