Santa was not there for the legends

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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

Legends win the 10th Shanghai Masters Cup

10th Shanghai Masters CupLast Saturday, our legends were participating to the 10th Shanghai Masters Cup organized by FC Super 48 with the objective to win once more this tournament ! With only 12 players in our squad, our task was to make it to the finals against fitter & faster japanese teams in each and every game. Ten minutes before our first match, we got a complete squad as the field was very far in Shanghai suburbs… Actually this used to be Shanghai Shenhua Football Club training ground in their early years…

[Group Stage] Lions Legends 5-0 Ferie FC

Our first game was against the odds as Lions usually don’t start well but this time we went on a rampage and destroyed the opponent 5-0 in only 20 minutes !

[Group Stage] Lions Legends 0-0 South China

In our next game we faced a much better team as they were faster and we had to double efforts to keep the clean-sheet to end the game with 0-0 which was ok.

IMG_4007

[Group Stage] Lions Legends 1-0 Legends of Super 48

In our last group game, we actually played very well but were unlucky in our finishing… We finally nailed it with a penalty of Bob sending us through to the quarter finals !

[1/4 Final] Lions Legends 2-2 Zoo Sepia

In the quarter finals we played another Japanese team with a few good players and we ran into trouble as they scored from a far distance free kick… With time running out we tried to stay cool and Bob found a great equalizer. However, we gave back the lead after poor defending and they put the 2-1 in the far corner by a volley with only 5 mn to go… In the last 2 mn, Laid blasted the ball in the goal from the left to give us a chance thru penalties ! Pascal turned up as our savior stopping 2 and we were in the semi !

[1/2 Final] Lions Legends 0-0 FC Shanghai Super 48

Our Semi final was an easier game with no threat by Super 48… However we also couldn’t score so we were at penalties again all was good until Zizzy Fred came up to kick us into the final with fresh legs but his ball hardly reached the line ! Luckily we went thru by the next penalty !

IMG_4014[Final] Lions Legends 0-0 Shanghai Japan FC

In the final we faced Japan FC (by far the best team on the day) but we made a superb team effort to hold them back and after 20 mn it was 0-0. It led to additional 10 mn extra-time where none both team team have been able to score… Once more 0-0 as final score ! So, penalties were to make the final decision again ! Bob, unnerved, took his 4th penalty of the day and scored. Francois, after 1 miss and one goal scored his 2nd. Pascal, by then, famous for his penalties saves scared the Japanese players as two missed the target. Nico was there to finish the job and it was a great day of football for our legends with a happy ending !

 

IMG_4015Big thanks to Super 48 for organizing this fantastic yearly event and you can be rest assured when you let the Japanese organize it all details are close to perfection ! We are already invited for next year and surely try and defend our title ! Well done Legends a super team effort ! As highlight of the day, Pascal won MVP award while being 2nd oldest player participating in this tournament at the age of 56. Special thanks also to Diego, Pierre’s son, who was awesome supporting us all day long… Nothing is more important but to pass on our success to our sons & daughters.

 

Cheers
Freek

Legends beat Welsh 2-0 with their “Zizzi Restaurants” new outfit

we are zizziIt was not a beautiful day but somehow soccer players like rainy days ! The only issue was that our captain Fred was missing with our new set of jerseys and with the quick-off time approaching we were running out of time… Finally, he arrived 5mn before kick-off and the highlight of the day was our happy team picture showcasing those “Zizzi Restaurants” new outfit !

Zizzi RestaurantsWe had a strong squad but Wales had a large squad as well and decided to park the bus ! They kept all players on their half all the time however with good possession and short passed we took control of the game.

In the first 20mn we kept it at 0-0 which was ok. In the next 20, Dave opened the score as a final scorer after great combinations from our side ! This was a game changer as Wales aborted their “bus tactic” and it gave us more opportunities especially on counter attacks ! Soon, Dave scored his second and when we started the 3rd 20 minutes we knew that to keep the clean sheet would give us the the three points ! Our defense stayed focus and in the last 20 minutes we knew what we had to do in order not to give it away ! The President came close to score with his first touch in the match when he came on in the last 20 minutes after a great cross from Mamdouh but his effort went wide ! Just before the final whistle, one last great save from Clement helped us keep the clean sheet which bring us back close to the top of the SPL V at equal points with Scotland ! 

Click here for the match statistics.

 

unnamed (1)Let’s all make an effort and come to the trainings on Tuesdays ! With both Japan and Emeral having lost points there can be an opportunity for us if we are serious enough !

 

Cheers
Freek

Versus Super 48, the secret weapon came from the bench

The pressure was on for the legend as their coach was not at the game due other youth lions football day, and the game started well with Super 48 conceding a penalty within the first 10 minutes. Fred F, full of confidence, sent the ball over the fence… Then right after that, Miss Super 48 manage to get a penalty and we found ourselves 1-0 down but our secret weapon was on the bench…

Kevin came on the second quarter and scored a beauty from 25 yard… At 1-1, the game was on. A while later, Kevin again found Bob in the open space for 2-1. Kevin again scored another goal from 25 yards for the 3-1. Then we started to relax and got punished two times within 10 minutes putting back the score at 3-3…

In the 3rd quarter, Fred F found Bob again in space for the 4-3.

Last quarter was a lot better we started to play very well with a real passing style. Imad came from the inside and scored for the 5-3 which made us feel safe. Finally, Fred F scored for first time this season with an assist from Imad… 6-3 as final score and special mention to Sylvain for his solid game in the middle as well as Mamdouh.

 

Well done Lions and you can click here for the match statistics.

 

Cheers
Fred

Legends open the new SPL Veteran season with a win

[ SPL VETERAN ] Shanghai Lions FC 7 – 0 P/F

It was great weather last Sunday and we played on a good pitch at Wellington School ! As we played a Japanese team and we knew that they are generally fit we decided to put our defense in order first. With James on the right and Imad on the left we took extra precaution not to be got out on a fast counter by the Japanese.

We focused on set pieces and it was our first corner which gave us the first goal with a nice flick in from Bob. Soon it was a great piece of skill by James who scored with a bicycle kick after another corner and Nicolas made it 3-0 with the first 20 minutes which was a great start of the match.

In the next 20 we tried to keep a clean sheet but the Japanese were still dangerous a few times however our defense and goalie Clement held out strong.

It was in the next 20 minutes that we putted the game to bed… 2 goals from Freek within 4 minutes with a great pass from Kevin and a good assist from Bob made it 5-0. Nicolas added his second and the icing on the cake came from new comer Mamdouh who scored a beauty in the far corner !

The beers tasted well after the match but we know that the tougher teams are stronger this season and we need to step up and get back into fitness to rival them !

 

All starts at Tuesday at the training !

 

Cheers
Freek

Season 2017/18 has been a success

successful season 2017-2018Dear Senior Lions, Lions Youth, Lions Legends, Lions Abroad, Friends and Family ! As a club we ended our season last weekend with our youth clinching the SPL U17 Title ! While we started as an expat team back in 1996, we’re certainly now a real family Club ! We have three strong sections representing the club at the highest competitive football level in Shanghai ! All of this contributed to make a successful season 2017-2018 ! Xie Xie

 

Youth Academy (SPL U17)

Let’s start with our Lions Youth first as they have the future ! We were asked to take over the Century Park Youth (above 14 years old) back in May 2017… From day 1, we were committed to make it happen as we already had a youth team for the older players.

We set up the Shanghai Lions Youth Academy and were happy to have Azzeddine and Nick taking up the coaching / training jobs ! We trained twice a week on Wednesday and Friday at the great 11 aside field of Concordia and played matches in the SPL U17 league on Saturdays. The commitment and hard work of our players at the training was outstanding and week after week our team got stronger and stronger. Suddenly, players from all over the world started to bond and what was crucial was that especially our older youth players started to feel responsible for the younger ones and they gave them great support and advice during the season !

This in the end resulted in success ! First we won the Aksil Cup beating the German in final on penalties ! It showed our never give up mentality ! In the SPL U17 league we were trailing from behind after two losses early in the season but week after week we got stronger and stronger. Therefore, when Wiss Stoke City slipped up against Ebbe Sand we knew that a win over Japan would give us the title ! We didn’t have to tell the young lions what was at stake as a large win sealed the deal and it was great end of a great season !

Matty got the SPL top scorer award with 19 goals and Julia picked up the Champions award as our captain ! Great team effort and great job from the coaches !

Golden Boot Award

  Name   Age PL GLS
Matthew Ward 15 7 19
Philipp Jobst 18 10 11
Victor Xavier Veloso 18 6 4
more stats

Youth Team Standing (Season 2017-2018)

 

First Team (SPL)

Next up are our Lions Senior players who played in the SPL, a competition we have won multiple times ! With the Cowboys and ERS having left the league, we knew that the Marlins will be our closest rival. Also, it was clear that we couldn’t afford any slip against other teams !

In the first half of the season we won all our games but when we were up against the Marlins for the first time on January 14 we got an important wake up call as we not only lost Azz by injury during the game but we lost the match without creating opportunities 4-0 ! The turn out of the training during the winter started to drop which was not a good sign.

Luckily, some of our Youth players were ready to help out and started to get more and more playing time in our first team. We had to wait until April 14 to have our second encounter against the Marlins a loss would end our hopes. With a 1-1 score line and with 15 minutes to go on the clock it was by goals of our youngsters Shingi and Matty that gave us a 3-1 win and kept us in the race.

So the Championship race came down to the final match of the season we needed a win as we tied on goal difference but had scored less goals. The Marlins took the title away from us in a well deserved 3-2 win ! We gave it all in the second half and showed great team spirit on and off the field ! We will try to get the title back next season and we know now that we cannot slip up after the Christmas break !

Golden Boot Award

  Name   Age PL GLS
Azzeddine Takouloufa 34 11 13
Romain & Jerome a Bloc Romain Haution 32 9 9
Shingai Nindi 19 7 9
more stats

First Team Standing (Season 2017-2018)

 

Veteran Team (SPL V)

Our Legends were in the race for the SPL V Championship which went to the Emeralds on previous season ! However this time Emerald slipped up twice losing against Japan and Scotland and we were in a very close race with Japan for the title. In our second last match we faced Japan and we needed a draw to clinch the title ! The match was nerve wrecking but our defensive strategy paid off as we made sure Japan couldn’t counter we even scored first with a fine strike of Laid. With great saves from our goalie Clement and solid defensive work we could keep Japan on hold but they got one goal back and the last 10 minutes were not for the faint hearted people ! The final whistle was a big relief and we could start the celebrations ! SPL V Champions !

Golden Boot Award

  Name   Age PL GLS
Frederic Guilloux 43 12 17
Nicolas Bouchou 41 10 7
James B 47 10 5
more stats

Veteran Team Standing (Season 2017-2018)

 

Two Championship Titles and a Second place is a good result for the Club. A special thank you is well placed for the hard work Azzeddine and Nick have done to keep us fit and sharp and focused at the training ! The training were great week in and week out ! Of course we also like to thank Concordia for allowing us to use their great facilities as nothing better than to train at a full size 11 aside field ! Our website reached 2.5 M clicks this year which is an achievement in its own right. Big thank you for Francois keeping track of the site and statistics for the players ! Thank you Thomas Z for helping to coach the first team !

What was important this season was that we got several youth players making their debut in the senior first team and they did very well as well we got several senior players making their debut in the Legends team and they did well as well. This makes our club real and unique in Shanghai ! Lets keep supporting each other and make the Club stronger and stronger !

As every year,  a few players will leave us at the end of this season and we wish them good luck with their new life and ventures outside China. Now, we already managed to recruit a few new players on all three levels which is very important for the consistency of the teams in our Club !

 

We hope everybody will enjoy the World Cup and the Summer break and we are looking forward to see you all back in Shape in August ! Well done Lions Youth, Lions and Lions Legends !

 

Cheers
Freek

Legends pick their 2017 SPL Veteran championship trophy

SPL VeteranFor our Lions legends, it was the last performance of the season in SPL Veteran league with the end of the season 7 aside tournament followed by the award ceremony. We had a great squad and motivation was high to try and win the tournament. Our strategy was laid out by the coach and we all agreed clean sheets first as matches were just 12 minutes each so to concede first it would be the end of the glory !

  • We won our first match 1-0 by a great strike of Kevin who gladly made his come back after falling ill a few months ago !
  • In our second game we did manage our clean sheet but we failed to score !
  • Our third match would be the decider to make it to the final match we were up against the Cowboys a solid 7 aside experienced local team. We did play well and got most of the possession and had a brilliant combination in midfield setting up Laid to tip in the goal but just one big Chinese toe stood in the way to block it ! in the last 30 seconds we give the ball away by accident and the Cowboys took the gift 1-0 loss.
  • For the rest of the tournament we just enjoyed the friendship with other teams and players in the league as its amazing to see so many players of over 35 still enjoy the game of football !

 

SPL VeteranSo our Legends won the SPL V league this season as you can see from the standing it was very very hard this year ! It was a great performance which came down to the last match against Japan which they needed to win and the Lions had enough to draw it was 1-1 in the end ! ! Amazing team performance ! So we picked up the Cup but also two more awards. Top scorer of the SPL V was Bob with 17 goals ! As well best goalie award which of course will be for both Pascal and Clement !

 

Every year will be harder and harder to win this Championship as the level of the Veteran League is getting better and better ! So we will try to keep the title next season ! See you all at the training during the summer at Century Park !

 

Cheers
Freek

Lions Legends beat Shanghai Scottish 2-1 in a friendly

[ Friendly ] Shanghai Lions FC 2 – 1 Shanghai Scottish

shanghai scottishAs the season is coming to an end soon we were happy to play a friendly against Shanghai Scottish last Sunday ! The weather was very humid and hot and we had a nice mix of players ! The first twenty minutes we played well as Mike was keeping Carlton Palmer, the ex-national England player, busy while we had Adam and Masa flying on the wings. It was a great strike of Patrick after he was ordered to shoot by half the team that gave us a 1-0 lead. The Scotts played well and compact and were dangerous on the counter. They hit the cross bar and post but our stand in goalie the president himself was not impressed however they did equalize with a header. In the balance of the match we struggled to find solutions in the box but had most of the possession… credit to the Scotts who defended well and never gave up the fight. The hard work on our side was rewarded two minutes from the end when Azz set up our upcoming left back Conway who didn’t hesitate to put the ball in the net !

 

The beers after the match tasted good !

 

Cheers
Freek

Legends beat Strosso 7-2

[ Veteran ] Shanghai Lions FC 7 – 2 FC Strosso

StrossoThe weather was great and the pitch not bad ! The legends were up against Strosso a Japanese team with the typical Japanese style of playing which mean they never give up and keep running fast until the very last moment.

We had several key players missing for this match but with the return of Yohan (one of the old guard Lions / Les Bleus) we managed to bring a 12 men squad helped also by Julia, our upcoming talented youth players.

In the first 20 minutes we were up 2-0 goals by Nicolas and James. In the second 20 minutes Sam made it 3 and Mike celebrated his first goal ! Strosso came back with a goal and we also lost our keeper Clement, very unfortunate, as he twisted his ankle by himself ! Igor, our new player from Ukraine, took the position as keeper and Mike scored another one which he celebrated by taking off his shirt ! Strosso pulled one more back and in the last 20 it was Max “Schmeichel” making his debut as keeper. Our President give an assist to Mike to fulfill his dream as he scored a Hat-trick for the Legends and at the end another President assist found James he didn’t hesitate to score !

Overall a good match and the beer tasted good afterwards !

Cheers
Freek

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