Seniors wrote history with an amazing come-back

Last Saturday, our senior team was up against Kickers FC again after we beat them last week on penalties in the quarterfinal of SIFL Hebiguchi Cup. On the paper, we had more players and a stronger squad compared to last week. However, the arrival time of some of our players didn’t match the kick-off time… Luckily, the Kickers were in the same boat as they asked for a bit later kick-off time because they had only 11 players for this match but still were missing two.

At the start, we couldn’t start our prefered line-up but opted for 3 in the back with the idea to play wide over the wings where Hira and Seiwa would use their speed.

Well, if you would be a script writer this was the place to be! Within 5 min, we got a misunderstanding between Masa-san and Jay our goalie… A “classic case” of who expect who to take the ball but none of them took the ball… So Kickers accepted the gift!

Few minutes later, our back line didn’t know how to deal with the fast Kickers forward and wrong decisions gave them the 2-0. It looked like we we were still willing to give the Kickers a free pass… To their much surprise, we were soon 0-3 down after 18 minutes. A first ever in all Shanghai Lions FC history!

Yes, we had a little “panic moment” but the late comers arrived and we changed back to 4 in the back to close the open gate. It did work as we had immediate spells of better football. It was a foul on Gorex that gave us a penalty. We thought Peter will do the job but his effort got stopped by the Kickers goalie.

After the half time whistle, there was a rare outburst of our President who told the players that everything what happened was because ourselves and our attitude towards the game. All players had to take the responsibility and fix this situation.

Yes, we got the message and were looking for a come back. Kickers decide to sit back and defend while we were going for the attack. We got a couple of nice played opportunities but our final ball was too weak.

Just when our frustration reached a high, it was Louka our youngest Lion only 14 years old who scored a deflected shot. This is what we needed and from that moment, it was game ON!

Very soon after, it was Peter who wanted to compensate his penalty miss and tried his luck as well to shoot and the Kicker’s keeper didn’t see his shot coming.

Coming back to 2-3, we knew we had the upper hand to get the result back in our favor. However, disaster struck when all our players thought the Kickers forward made a hand ball… The referee didn’t see it and his finish was really good to leave Nicholas youth goalie who replaced Jay with no chance. This was a big blow for us with only 8 minutes to go and 2-4 down trying to come back for the whole game.

But… Peter tried his luck once again to shoot in the busy box of Kickers. Due to the many people in the box, their goalie couldn’t see the ball coming. So back to 3-4, we knew the clock was ticking and tried to push forward all of our players.

It was Louka again who scored after a scrimmage to make it 4-4 with only two minutes left on the clock. What was amazing to see even after our 4-4, we still pushed for the win and as we talked about the script writer earlier… Here is the moment when Jack our central defender was up top to go for the win and he made an incredible step over to let Hira-san score the winner.

The final whistle was the end of a historic game for the Lions. As said by the President after the game:

We wrote history twice in this game. First, to get 0-3 down after 18 minutes which never happened before. Second, to make a come back after being 0-3 then 2-4 down with only 8 minutes to go… to finally win 5-4.

Freek Boelen

[ SIFL ] Shanghai Lions FC 5-4 Kickers FC

We will not forget this “history” match any time soon. Credit as well to Kickers FC who gave us a hard time with a small squad.



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