Lions advance in Hebiguchi Cup and drew vs. Gremio

Lions,

[ SIFL Hebiguchi Cup ] Shanghai Lions 3-0 Shanghai Vikings FC

On Saturday, we played against the Vikings in the first round of the Hebiguchi Cup. We had not played against them for a while and knew them for their physical game. Patrick was missing for a while as he was hit by an acute food poisoning after eating chicken tika masala the night before! We started very well and scored within 2 minutes by Romain and it was our Captain (Benji) who looked the most inspired player of all the Lions on the day scored the second two minutes later. When Matthieu scored our third goal everybody knew the game was over as goal difference doesn’t count in cup game…

We tried to look for small passing possession games in the second half but it was not easy to find the motivated to push for more! By this win we made it to the semi-finals of this cup.

 

[ SPL ] Shanghai Lions 2-2 Gremio

On Sunday we had a hard game against Gremio a strong Chinese / Brazilian team. The game consisted of two completely different halves. In the first half we found ourselves playing against only 9 Gremio players. We managed to get a quick goal from right back Francois who pushed forward and finished nicely. We tried very hard to score more and take advantage of the situation but we were not good in making the final pass or the final shot or header ! It was 1-0 at half time and in the second half Gremio had a full squad complete with three fast fit and furious African players ! It was a superb strike of one of them who brought the equalizer. There was nothing that Dim our goalie could do about it! We pushed Dave upfront and that move paid dividend as a fast counter and a good cross from Tomas C found Dave free in front of the goalie and he didn’t hesitate to score the 2-1. Now the game was on and we had to defend more and more and it was an off side hesitation that give Gremio the equalizer. We still got good opportunities to play on the counter and Cesar came closest only to see his shot hit one post and hit the other post, very unlucky!!! With 10 minutes to go we lost Nacho after the Chinese referee gave him two cheap yellow cards… We held on and in the end we could look back at a good second half!

 

This week and next week it will be a very busy weekend for the Lions:

 

Let’s try to get the best out of all these games stay fit and focused!

Cheers Freek

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Lions advance in Hebiguchi Cup after eliminating D.I.B. FC

[ SIFL Hebiguchi Cup ] Shanghai Lions 2-1 D.I.B. FC

Last Saturday we played D.I.B. FC for the fourth time this season and it was an important game for several reasons:

  1. First of all a win would give us two wins, a draw and one loss against them and a loss would obviously make us look weaker than them
  2. Of course, keep on Hebiguchi Cup race was the other important factor.

With only two players on the field at 10:22 (kick off at 11:00) it was not the ideal preparation you like to see as a coach. Phone calls were coming in about bad traffic. But with the car population increasing every single month there should be no surprise about bad traffic! Within 10 minutes before kick off we got our 13 players and god bless D.I.B. FC started the game slow so that it was better for us getting into the game. Games against DIB are always very tight and both opponents were just waiting for each others mistakes. Charles had a perfect opportunity to give us the lead but his lob went just wide and on the other side we gave away a free kick right  in the middle of the the edge of our penalty box… Not a good spot as DIB’s Chaoyuan Yin curled the ball in our left corner… 0-1! We did respond with a fast counter attack and scored the equalizer threw Matthieu. In the second half we tried to get the winner but a combination of hot weather with several players coming back from injury made us sink deeper and deeper in the defense. DIB looked fitter but there is a thing called fighting spirit. If you don’t play well you can still fight and that’s just what we did. The reward came in the 87th minute when Benji on the left found Azz, free on the far right, who quickly passed it to Matthieu in the box who turned and slotted the ball in the top corner! Its not the first time this season that we scored in the very last minutes and that’s a good sign.

This coming Saturday we will play Metro in the league and the fact that DIB just transferred two players to them will give us extra motivation! Great win and we now need to focus on the league and get back into fitness for our last 6 games !

Cheers Freek

Mixed ressults for the Lions this weekend

On Saturday we faced the DIB for the third time this year for the quarter final of the SIFL Cup. Whenever we play them we know it will be a very close game and we need to be 100 pct focused to get a result. It was good to see Max our goal keeper back in Shanghai and early in the game he made sure we kept a clean sheet. We got some good opportunities on the breaks and Charles came closest when his volley hit the woodwork. Nil-nil at half time and in the second half we took more possession and started to play better football. The reward came 15 minutes before the end by an excellent goal started on the left by Azzeddine who found Benji and he decided to take three DIB players on at once and crossed the ball in and out of nowhere came Francois our right back to slot home the 1-0. Straight after we got a great opportunity to make it 2-0 by a header of Azzeddine. The way the game developed we knew it will not be easy for DIB to score but as it goes in football things can change. An unfortunate drop of the ball by Max our goalie landed straight in the feet of Didier who score from close range, 1-1. Moments later a deflected cross fell again straight in the feet of the DIB striker and the game was upside down. This time there was no turn around in the game. Losing is part of the game and it will make us stronger.  It was good to see all Lions staying back for a beer and some fun with our New Dutch player who gave a live performance at WGQ!

Next up are the Azzurri and obvious that is  a massive league game for us !

 

On Sunday we faced the Bulls who for the occasion had a few Azzurri players on loan. The Bulls won their last 8 games and we knew it wouldn’t be a walk over. After two minutes they scored ! Call it a wake up call ! After that we started to play some good football and were very dangerous on the counter attacks. Twice Matthieu scored with a header and we could haves score a few more goals. In the second half stand in goalie Francois saved us twice as the Bulls got a clear scoring opportunity!

After Big John showed us in the first half how not to take a free kick and Yosh followed on this it was out of all people Simon who scored from a free kick. Soon after it was Dave’s turn and he smashed the ball in the top corner! 4-1 a good result and a good lions performance! Next up are the Galacticos and of course we need to continue our unbeaten run.

 

In the pooring rain we had a special training session by Azzeddine for our young Lions and a turn out of 13 boys was good given that some couldn’t make due to tournament commitments. The boys had fun and learned a lot. This is a good example of the strength of the Lions as all the training we organize are done by the best people we have in our own club. Great way to end the weekend !

 

We expect everybody to come to the training on Wednesday and we all look forward to the weekend already !

 

Cheers Freek

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Lions start the SIFL season with an important win

[ SIFL ] D.I.B. FC 0-1 Shanghai Lions

October weather is always pleasant in Shanghai and perfect for playing football. Our first game of the new SIFL season was straight away one of the most important as we were facing DIB last year’s runners up! It was a 15:00 PM kick off which is not easy to stay focused before the game. However we got 17 motivated lions ready to start the season and everybody was on time. We were quite surprised that the DIB came pretty late and seemed to be more busy carrying boxes to the field than preparing for the game! Our strategy was to play smart and try to keep the game at a slower pace. We didn’t want to ignite the fire and although the first half must have been boring for the spectators it was all about a real tactical battle where each side hoped that one of their opponents would make a mistake. We got a few close calls but managed a 0-0 at half time. The second half was different because some of the DIB players were not as fit as all the Lions. Suddenly our season preparation paid-off, boot camps and friendly games combined with hard training session, gave us the edge. We found more holes in their midfield and started to play more counter attacking football. The reward game from a free kick. The spot was perfect but when I looked at the Chinese Wall I got scared all their players in the Wall were 1.90 tall. I like to bet against the odds and this time I asked our bench who wanted to bet with me as I claimed Azz would hit the wall……….nobody took the bet and Azz blasted it in the top corner when he saw the DIB keeper was out of position! We got several opportunities to score two/three more goals but we were not sharp enough yet.

Our biggest asset on the day was our defense. We defended over 20 corners without threat and in the dying minutes of the game we got a few calls against us but we stayed focused. DIB got a free kick even closer to the goal than ours of Azz but they wasted it in the last minute of the game. I was really happy with our discipline and team spirit during the game. The bench whoever was on it were on their toes screaming to support the lads on the field. At one point I had to ask Charles not to scream that loud as I was afraid of earthquakes……! 1-0  it stayed and it was so important for us to start the season with a win!

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1st training of 2013-2014 season

 

[ Veteran ] Shanghai Irish (IRE) 3-4 Shanghai Lions

[ Veteran ] Shanghai Irish (IRE) - Shanghai Lions (2)The next day the veterans were looking for a win to keep their first position in the League. Veteran play four small halves and after the second half it was 1-1 versus the Irish who stood out for  their swearing words thrown on the pitch either to the referee, or us, or their own players. Our third quarter we played like real Lions and destroyed them 4-1! At the end we gave them two goals so that the spectators and assistant coaches were happy to come and support all the way in Waigaoqiao. Great result 4-3 win!

 

 

[ Veteran ] Shanghai Irish (IRE) - Shanghai Lions

Great weekend for the Lions! Key for all the Lions is the training and we urge that everybody attend the training this Wednesday / Please let us know on our website that you come so that we can plan the training sessions accordingly. Our training sessions are the best in Shanghai!

 

Lets keep our spirit high! Go Lions Go!

Cheers Happy Freek

Shanghai Lions honored to play with Chinese ex-professional football stars

Shanghai Lions honored to play with Chinese ex-professional football stars

Gong Lei (middle) -  Head coach of Guizhou Renhe Football Club

Gong Lei (middle) – Current head coach of Guizhou Renhe Football Club in Chinese Super League (中超联赛)

 

It was a busy Saturday for the Lions this 24th of August, 2013. In the evening, Lions were honored to play a friendly versus a team composed of Chinese ex-professional football stars such as Zheng Kewei (郑科伟) and Gong Lei (宫磊).

Lions’ bench was a little short in depth and we lost this friendly game 5-4 (2-2 in the 1st half). Although our team was much younger, our opponents proved us that touch, class and skills matter in football… Yes, we did run after the ball but it was a very friendly atmosphere and we hope to renew the experience soon.

 

 

 

 

Maserati Neptune CupEarlier in the day, some Lions were invited to represent Shanghai International Football League (SIFL) for the round 2 of the Maserati Neptune Cup in Shanghai. The first round took take place in Beijing On July 13th, 2013 with 4 teams: Shanghai SIFL, Beijing Media, IFFC Dream Team and National Media.

Shanghai SIFL won 2013 edition beating IFFC “Dream Team” 2-0 in final.

Kevin Wiessler from Shooters got tournament MVP award.

 

Shanghai SIFL won 2013 edition beating IFFC Dream Team 2-0 in final

Lions Youth now open for registration U16 and U18 season 2013/14

Young Lions,

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Last season after we established the Shanghai Lions Football Club we can look back at a very successful season. We have won over 6 titles and to have won both the SIFL and the SPL Championship (the best leagues in Shanghai) tells us that we are on the right track !

 

We started with our first youth team the Lions U18 last year. The key driver to do this was the enthusiasm of the boys who joined. It was a real pleasure to train with them and they were really motivated to play finally for a real club instead of the usual school games. We entered with our youth team in the SPL men’s tournament the Santa Cup and it was a great experience for the boys / we organized friendly games versus school teams as well against the Shanghai Lions Senior teams / some of the U18 players were selected for Senior team games and gained valuable experience and Alex and Lucas even ended up having played in the SIFL Cup final which we won !

 

In order to give more players an opportunity to play for the Shanghai Lions and experience what it is to play for a Club we decided to add an U16 team as both U16 – U18 teams can benefit each other.

 

What we can offer to the boys and girls is listed below :

– once a week 2 hours training most likely on a Wednesday or Friday evening.

Trainings are hold by experienced Lions players who are still playing regular in the Men’s Lions teams. Trainings will focus on skill / speed / stamina / team play / strength. Obvious the ones who come regular to the trainings will benefit most !

– friendly games against schools and or shanghai teams and against the Men’s teams. Mostly on weekends.

– Entering of tournaments either for youth or for men’s, like the Lions Cup and Santa Cup

– Outfit / every player will get his own set of shirt/short/socks

 

The Fee for this season will be 2000 rmb which you can pay at the first training we will announce the place and date of the training in due course, most likely at the Century Par !

If you are interested to join please send an email to info@shanghai-lions.com with your confirmation and we will keep the spot reserved for you !

Looking forward to see and train more young Lions so that they can take care of our future of our Club !

 

Sportive Greetings / Freek Boelen / President Shanghai Lions Football Club

 

A great end to a great Season !

Amigo’s and Amiga’s,

It couldn’t get any hotter than that in Green City. A sizzling heat broke the hottest day recorded in June since 1834 ! Nonetheless we had 12 teams lined up to play the end of the season tournament. The field was in perfect condition thanks to the Grass Master and the tents around the field could give the players at least some shade. Several teams had their end of the season party the night before and you could tell that in the first games of the tournaments. Teams were divided on two groups, one with the top 6 finishers of the SPL and one with the bottom 6 finishers of the SPL. It would give a fair chance to the lower ranked teams to play a final ! The cowboys showed their 8 aside skill and went into the final one point ahead of the Lions and in the other group the Samba’s (Japan) topped their group right ahead of the Pistolera Bulls. The final was won by the Cowboys as they had more energy left in their legs. Great spirit in the tournament and everybody enjoyed the games !

 

Final ranking of the end of the season tournament :

1)      Cowboys

2)      Samba’s

3)      Lions

4)      Pistolera Bulls

5)      Gremio

6)      Japan

7)      Flamenkos

8)      Galacticos

9)      Marlins

10)   Shanghai 2000

11)   Super 48

12)   ERS

 

After that it was party time at Latina and helped by the great weather and music, beers, food and  of course the Brazilian dancers, we could all enjoy the celebrations !

SPL 1 SPL 2 SPL 3

Once again we like to thank everybody who helped to complete our tenth SPL anniversary and made it the best season sofar !

 

Thank you to Yamada-san (schedule), Frederik (website), Adam for the Jinqiao field, Karl for Century Park field, James and David for the Waigaoqiao field, the Referees, the Dulwich school, Latina, Team Managers, The Captains, all SPL Players and team Sponsors   !

 

Cheers Freek SPL President on behalf of the SPL Committee !

Lions clinch the SIFL double

Lions & Lions supporters,

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It was hot on Saturday morning in Shanghai ! We had many activities on the program but first it was the SIFL Cup final against the Dutch ! We had a large squad but everybody was motivated and focused with one goal in mind to win the Cup.

 

Idea was too start aggressive and take advantage of the Dutch being nervous. Jonny O Sh…, warned us to stay calm if we were 1-0 down. Problem was that we were leading 3-0 after 20 minutes. Mr Mendel and High Flyer Jack scored the goals for us. We gave them a goal back to make the game more interesting and the referee helped as well a little to award the Dutch a penalty after one of their players slipped. We were back into a real cup thriller 3-2 ! The second half the legs were getting tired after a long season and we needed to work hard to keep the score as it was. We almost blew when we let the Dutch fast forward run thru our total defense only to see his shot being denied by the post. That’s what they call the Champions Luck ! Final whistle and time to celebrate our double !

 

After the Cup final we played the end of the season tournament as were in the group of death, Azzurri and DIB and Shooters……! Not easy with the Cup game in the legs ! Think in the end we ended 3rd or 4th !

After it was beer time and collection time for our trophies :

  1. SIFL opening tournament Cup
  2. SIFL Cup
  3. SIFL Champions Cup
  4. Dream team medals : Azz + Jerome + Benji + Dani + Dimitri
  5. MVP : Azz
  6. Coach of the Year : Freek

With all the trophies we headed to BLOC for our end of the season Lions Party! Absolute fun and great atmosphere everybody got an award for their contribution this season !

On Sunday we collected our SPL Champions Cup and ended third in the tournament there. Now we really need a Clubhouse for our silverware! What a weekend ! Amazing Lions !

 

Happy Happy Happy Freek

Lions win the third edition of the Amoy Cup in Xiamen !

Lions,

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Sometimes it’s good to step out of your comfort zone and try a tournament or match outside Shanghai ! That’s just what we did we managed to get 14 Lions willing to take on the challenge in Xiamen ! Both teams were in separate groups of 6 and needed to end 4th or higher to make to the quarter final. That was 5 games for each in the humid and hot weather of Xiamen. The pitch was in a beautiful location on an tourist island and real grass / the size of the pitch was small which in the end was good and resulted in many many Lions goals ! Lions B, the older and experienced lions helped by two experienced Xiamen players (old..) , were having a tough group but still managed to end 3rd in the group ! Lions A, the fast and furious helped by Lions Legend Kely, in the easy group won all their games and ended 1st in their group. The quarter final started after a heavy rain break and the opponent of Lions B appeared to be too fast and too strong, Xiamen African Star ! Lions A cruised into the semi’s after crushing a Latino Team with more than 10 goals ! However they were up against the same African team as Lions B, within 5 minutes we were 1-0 down and the Africans started to party, however it takes much more to beat a Lions team. Within three minutes we leveled with a skillful strike of Kely and before the Africans knew it they were losing good play by Azz and good finish by Charles. In the second half we locked the game with a 3-1 score and win ! The final was against a Chinese local team and the field was packed with tourists watching our game ! After 7 games of football the legs were tired and the pace was slow however we scored by Gui on a very fast break. In the second half we found more space and a perfect cross of Kely was nicely headed home in the top corner by Gui. We knew we wouldn’t give this away anymore but we let the Chinese score with a bicycle kick in the last minute to make everybody happy !mmexport1371102543191

Time to party we were the first outsider to win this tournament ! It was a well deserved and a great team effort, including family and friends who came out to support us ! This was a very well organized tournament with a good level of football.  Victor, our Lions A goalie was voted goalie of tournament and Gui our top scorer with 18 goals in 8 games was miraculously denied to the top scorer trophy  ! However we won the Cup and showed the people in Xiamen who are the Lions ! We received many compliments afterwards about our display of football as well our fair play !

 

Lets win one more Cup on Saturday (SIFL Cup Final) and then celebrate this great season all together at Bloc !

 

Cheers Happy Freek (who scored a penalty with his head !)

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