Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Biggest ever deal

President Rithy Samnang and Smart CEO Thomas Hundt
Phnom Penh Crown sign what is believed to be the biggest sponsorship deal in domestic Cambodia League history as they join forces with telecoms giant Smart Axiata in a 3-year deal for an undisclosed sum. Smart will be the name on their jerseys from next season as well as joining Crown for community and CSR initiatives. Here's the 1st-Team joining in the press conference this afternoon at RSN.
The PPCFC 1st-Team at the press conference
PPCFC are proud to announce the signing today of a partnership agreement with Smart Axiata, who will become the official and exclusive telco partner of the club for the next 3 years. Club president Rithy Samnang said: "Phnom Penh Crown is very excited to welcome Smart Axiata as our main partner for the next three years. Not only will Smart become our main jersey sponsor, we are looking forward to working closely with them to develop football and sports-related community and social responsibility programs. Smart's ongoing commitment to support the communities they serve through their sporting, educational and public health projects, as part of their core company values, makes them the perfect partner for Phnom Penh Crown. Our club strives to make a real difference by developing our own youth academy, community and school programs and our involvement as agents for positive change in societal activities." 
The partnership was inked at a press conference at the club's RSN Stadium this afternoon attended by the media, Smart representatives and the Crown first-team squad. Smart's CEO Thomas Hundt added; " Smart and PPCFC share many common values. They are an outstanding club with an exceptional performance record... We are very happy to support this long-term vision from the club... This partnership is another of Smart's Major initiatives towards promoting community health while purposefully creating world-class football players." Smart already work closely with PPCFC and are this season sponsoring the PPCFC Academy in the Asia Champions Trophy. However, this new agreement takes the partnership to a new level, in what we see as exciting times ahead for PPCFC, Smart and Cambodian football.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Harry in the spotlight

Harry talks to Lim Pisoth
The spotlight falls on PPCFC Academy U-15 technical coordinator Harry Varley in this interview for the website, British Coaches Abroad Association @ http://www.britishcoachesabroad.com/meet-the-coach-harry-v…/ - Harry joined the club recently after experience at Shrewsbury Town, Sporting Khalsa Ladies and Coerver Coaching where he was technical coach (UK), academy development officer (Mexico), and regional director (New Zealand).

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Making a point in Vietnam

Final score: PVF Academy (Vietnam) 2 PPCFC Academy 2 (U-18 ACT 2015).
A superb battling performance by the Crown Academy against last year's beaten finalists on their home turf in Vietnam, earned them a 2-2 draw with the visitors twice coming from behind. PVF scored first on 26 minutes with a fortunate header, which Ouk Sovann levelled 3 minutes after the break when his 30-yard free-kick from wide on the left deceived the goalkeeper and sneaked inside the far post. On 71 minutes, PVF went in front again with a rasping shot from outside the box, but substitute Umaru Samura came on and curled a 20-yard free-kick over the wall and into the PVF net for a 2nd equaliser on 81 minutes. A well-deserved and valuable ACT point for the Academy U-18s.
PPCFC line-up, back row, LtoR: Sovann, Soksela, Senteang, Jason, Titchhy, Sodavid (capt). Front row: Chanpolin, Suleiman, Noeut, Ponvuthy, Rozak.

PPCFC Academy technical director Tom Legg gave his thoughts after yesterday's 2-2 draw with PVF in Ho Chi Minh, which gave the PPCFC Academy their first away point of this year's U-18 Asia Champions Trophy. "Overall we are pleased with the result and performance from our young squad last night, we showed great desire and competitiveness from the first minute to the last. Its always a challenge playing away from home and considering the difficult conditions we faced leading up to the game, the players adapted very well. We had to make a few last minute changes to the game plan after the heavy rains and I was happy to see the players show their tactical flexibility to take on board and apply those changes.
Everyone that watched the game could see we carried much more of an attacking threat than PVF and we created a number of good goal-scoring opportunities, which is always pleasing when you are playing away from home.
Taking a step back and reviewing the last two performances from the players should go some way to show that we are not in this competition to simply make up the numbers, we are here to compete and achieve success.
We're still on track to reach our minimum points target for these two games which we feel will leave us in a strong position to challenge for qualification to the knock-out phase."
The ACT Group B points totals after 3 matches for each team: Kashima Antlers - 6 points, Frenz United B - 5 points, PVF - 2 points, PPCFC Academy - 2 points.

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Cambodia lose 6-0

The four PPCFC players involved in Cambodia's World Cup qualifying campaign, which continued last night at the Olympic Stadium, with a 6-0 defeat by Syria, will return to training with the club this afternoon, ahead of Saturday's match with AEU. Sos Suhana (12) and Keo Sokpheng (14) started last night's game and can be seen in Park's pre-match team photo, Bin Thierry came on as a substitute in the 58th minute while Kok Boris was an unused replacement. All of our players were very appreciative of another fantastic turn-out from Cambodia's fans last night - a crowd of 35,000 - despite heavy rain. Cambodia's next WC game will be in Singapore on 13 October. Pic courtesy of Park.

Monday, September 7, 2015

7-2 defeat for U-15s

The PPCFC Academy U-15s lost out to a Ministry of Interior team on Saturday at RSN Stadium. The visitors led 4-0 at the break and despite a Nop David penalty and a Pich Sovannaroth goal after the interval, the Ministry team ran out 7-2 winners.
PPCFC line-up, back row, LtoR: Bory, Sovannaroth, Chandara, Piseth, Panha, Chanmony. Front: Samel, Davann, N David, Pisoth, S David.

U-16s return home

The Cambodia U-16s are returning from Singapore after finishing fourth in their AFC U-16 Championships qualifying group H. Yesterday they lost 3-1 to hosts Singapore after a creditable 1-0 defeat to Thailand and a 7-0 reverse against North Korea. PPCFC's Yue Safy played in all three matches, whilst Sin Kakada started the game against Korea, and Yem Chetra started yesterday's match.

Saturday, September 5, 2015


Result: PPCFC 0 Nagaworld 1 (Friendly).
There was little to choose between the two sides in this evening's friendly at RSN Stadium. In a game of 3x30 minute periods, Naga got their noses in front 13 minutes into the second period when a hotly-disputed effort was allowed to stand by the referee. Shane Booysen, Yongsun Baek, Leng Makara, Odion Obadin and Prom Yaneat had good chances to open Crown's account, whilst Naga also had two far post efforts go the wrong side of the upright. Both sides return to league action next weekend after their 3-week break.
PPCFC vs Naga, back row, LtoR: Obadin, Baek, Yaneat, Booysen, C Pisa, Ary. Front: Makara, Boran, Tola, Dani, Koroma.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Friendly win

Result: PPCFC Academy 4 Porsenchey 2 (Friendly).
The senior Academy team were three goals ahead after 25 minutes in this friendly at RSN Stadium this afternoon. Early goals from Sath Rozak and Ouk Sovann were added to by another from Sovann before the visitors scored 7 minutes before the break. Ten minutes after the restart Mat Sakrovy slotted in Crown's fourth but Porsenchey never gave in and scored another.
PPCFC line-up, back row, LtoR: Jason, Titchhy, Soksela, Sovann, Chanpolin, Sodavid. Front: Rozak, Piphop, Muslim, Noeut, Ponvuthy.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Boris on the Japan match

Tomorrow is arguably the biggest game in Cambodia's footballing history, when they face a star-studded Japan team in the FIFA World Cup 2nd Round Qualifier in Saitama. We asked PPCFC captain Kok Boris (pictured with his 3 Crown teammates in the Cambodia squad) for his thoughts on the match. "I think this is a fantastic opportunity for us to show how much Cambodian football has developed and progressed. Everybody is impatient to play in the match. Japan are a fantastic team with great abilities and now with a fantastic coach Vahid Halilodzic, who I know bases his teams on discipline, rigor in pressing and hard-work because he coached teams in France like Lille, Rennes and Paris Saint-Germain.
As a team, we have worked very hard during the past two weeks on basic defense tactics, based on pressing and counter attack. We know Japan are the top team in Asia but now we must show that Cambodia can give problems to even the best teams in Asia. We must believe in all the attacking opportunities that we get as we know that we will not have a lot. We must stay unified as a team in effort and pressing. I think discipline and being smart in positional play will be the key to do something against Japan.
My personal thought is that this is a dream for all players and particularly Thierry and myself, we have lived the dream since we came to Cambodia, because we have been able to live our passion. We have won the country's best team title and now we can represent our nation against the best team in Asia and players from the EPL, Bundesliga and Serie A. It is a dream come true.
I hope I get the chance to play tomorrow, but more importantly is the performance of the team on behalf of our country and the performance of my brothers on the field. Go Go Cambodia."

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

U-13s in national championships

PPCFC U-13s win 8-0 vs Kompong Thom
The PPCFC Academy U-13s were knocked out of the U-13 National Championships this afternoon, losing 1-0 to Pailin, who scored after 14 minutes at Tonle Bati.

30 August: PPCFC Academy U-13s 13 Kompong Chhnang 0 (U-13 National Championships).
Another convincing and dominant display from the Academy U-13s as they completed their group matches this morning at Tonle Bati. With 7 goals in the 1st-half and another half dozen in the second period, they now go through to the last 16 full of confidence. The goals came courtesy of hat-tricks for Ros Darapich and Sem Phanny, with 3 goals each, Jonh Chhomrean 2, Tin Ladin 2, and Yim Makara, Kis Nakha and Met Samel 1 each.

29 August: PPCFC Academy U-13s 4 Preah Vihear 1 (U-13 National Championships).
The Academy U-13s won their second group game in the National Championships at Tonle Bati early this morning, with Jonh Chhomrean once again getting amongst the goals. He scored twice in the first-half and completed his hat-trick after the interval. Ky Rina got the other Crown goal. The U-13s face Kompong Chhnang in their final group match tomorrow at 8am.

28 August: PPCFC Academy U-13s 8 Kompong Thom 0 (U-13 National Championships).
In their opening U-13 National Championship game at Tonle Bati on Friday, the Academy U-13 were in control from the start and dominated the match. Jonh Chhomrean top-scored with 5 goals and there was one each for Kis Nakha, Ros Darapich and Mit Samel. Next game versus Preah Vihear at 8am today (Saturday). 

30 August:
A mixed PPCFC Academy team beat Victory FC 3-2 at RSN on Saturday afternoon. The U-15s were boosted with some of the senior Academy players, seeking to gain match practice. Victory led 1-nil at the break but goals from San David, Ouk Sovann and Suleiman Samura gave the home team the win.

World Vision mini-tournament

The World Vision mini-football tournament held at RSN Stadium yesterday was a great success. A big thank you to all the World Vision youngsters that came from many provinces to join in the event, and thanks to the PPCFC 1st-Team for joining in the fun with such enthusiasm. There was much to celebrate, as you can see from this photo.
Teenagers from World Vision projects around the country came to RSN Stadium for a 5-a-side mini-tournament and enjoyed a competition that included all of the PPCFC 1st-Team playing squad. The friendly competition was part of the One Goal campaign to focus on improving child nutrition and adopting healthy lifestyles. With teams representing Takeo, Banteay Meanchey, Siem Reap, Kompong Chhnang, Phnom Penh, Kompong Thom and Battambang, it was Takeo who triumphed, with Shane Booysen and Lous Charly as their 1st-Team players, beating Kompong Thom in the final. Congratulations to the winners and a big thanks to everyone who took part, including the fans from Kompong Thom who supported their team so vocally.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Hat-trick for Shane

Match Result: PPCFC 6 Cambodian Tiger 2 (Friendly).
In this friendly match at RSN Stadium with 3x30-minute halves, Crown went in front through Shane Booysen on 9 minutes and never looked back. Booysen calmly floated in his second on 36 minutes, and despite Neou Sosela pulling a goal back, a five-minute hat-trick from Um Tola sealed their fate. A header on 50 minutes, a neat snap-shot on 54 mins and a well-timed volleyed lob a minute later have him a trio of goals to remember. In the final period, Keo Sokngon headed Crown's sixth on 78 minutes and Tiger netted a second through Kihara Masakaz, but it was too little, too late.
PPCFC vs Tiger, back row, LtoR: Obadin, Usarphea, Sokngon, Baek, S Pisa, Boran. Front: Yaneat, Da, Booysen, Sokheng, Koroma.

Bin Thierry scored just before the half-time interval in the Cambodia national team's friendly match with Laos in Bangkok tonight, but it wasn't enough to avert a 2-1 defeat in the team's final match before they head to Japan for the World Cup Qualifying game on 3 September. All 4 PPCFC players in the World Cup squad - Thierry, Kok Boris, Sos Suhana and Keo Sokpheng - started the match with Laos.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Victory over BBU

Result: PPCFC Academy 4 BBU 1 (Friendly).
The senior Academy team were too strong for a young BBU line-up in this friendly encounter at RSN Stadium this afternoon and an early 5th minute goal from Yeu Muslim set the pace. Chhuot Senteang netted a second just before the break. BBU took advantage of a wayward pass to score but Crown came back strongly with goals from substitutes Pov Ponvuthy ( 72 mins) and Mat Sakrovy (87 mins) to win comfortably.
PPCFC line-up, back row, LtoR: Senteang, Umaru, Chanpolin, Chanchav, S Samnang, Sodavid. Front: Muslim, V Samnang, Noeut, Rozak, Baraing.

Shiny Rahus join Crown

PPCFC have joined forces with the Shiny Rahus, also known as the Phnom Penh Social Rugby Club (PPSRC), who will provide a weekly rugby training session for Crown's three Academy age groups. In return, RSN will host rugby events with PPSRC whenever possible. The rugby training will be designed to improve the Academy players' competitive mentality, pain thresholds and physical capabilities. Joining Tom Legg, Crown's Academy Technical Director, at the signing of the memorandum of understanding at RSN was PPSRC's Steve Noble, Fabien Dutasta and Ricardo Maria. We look forward to a fruitful relationship with our rugby-playing friends.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

3 in U-16s squad

Three members of the PPCFC U-15 Academy squad - Sin Kakada, Yue Safy and Yem Chetra - have joined the Cambodia U-16 national team for their trip to Malaysia to play a friendly match against the hosts national team and then will travel to Singapore for the AFC U-16 Championship Qualifiers. Cambodia will play against North Korea (2 Sept), Thailand (4 Sept) and hosts Singapore (6 Sept) in Group H in Singapore. A total of 45 countries entered the qualifying stage and are drawn into eleven groups. The Crown boys were also part of the national team squad that won the GFA Soriya U-15 international tournament at Tonle Bati last week that included teams from Japan and Singapore. Good luck to the boys and their teammates on their travels to Malaysia and Singapore.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

NT to Bangkok

LtoR: Suhana, Sokpheng, Boris, Thierry
The four PPCFC players with the Cambodia national team - Sos Suhana, Keo Sokpheng, Kok Boris and Bin Thierry - who are currently in Bangkok, will be involved in friendly matches against Thai Premier team Army United this evening and against Laos on 29 August, before the squad fly out to Japan for their World Cup Qualifying 2nd Round tie, which will take place on 3 September. We wish the players and the national team much success in their forthcoming matches. Sary Matnorotin has withdrawn from the squad through illness.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Following her dreams

Channou is one of our PPCFC community coaches and is a great example to young girls of following your dreams. She was a player with the Mighty Girls in Battambang for four years and is now living in Phnom Penh, combining her university studies in administration law with coaching our community teams. Channou was a goalkeeper and coach for the women's national team. Watch this video about her @ https://youtu.be/D2jG_Xjtt5s

Monday, August 24, 2015

Academy results

Back row, LtoR: Chanmony, Sakrovy, Chandara, Suleiman, Panha, Bory. Front: Puthik, N David, Pisoth, S David, Samel
The PPCFC Academy results this weekend: On Saturday the Academy U-13s beat Banteay Meanchey 3-2 with goals from Chhomrean 2 and Sokly. Following that game, the senior Academy team won 4-0 against K157 at RSN. Ouk Sovann, Umaru Samura 2 and In Sodavid scored the goals. On Sunday, the Academy U-15s drew 2-2 with Green Youth (Anachak Baitong), with Tong Chanmony and Mat Sakrovy scoring. Here's the U-15s pictured before the game with a couple of senior Academy players included. Back row, LtoR: Chanmony, Sakrovy, Chandara, Suleiman, Panha, Bory. Front: Puthik, N David, Pisoth, S David, Samel.

Making new friends

The PPCFC starting XI vs Star Light FC in Battambang: back row, LtoR: Ary, S Pisa, Baek, Bisan, Obadin (capt). Front: Da, Sokheng, Makara, Booysen, Boran, Yaneat.
Phnom Penh Crown have just completed a very successful tour of the northwest provinces of Cambodia. Six days spent in Siem Reap, Poipet and Battambang, making many new friends, playing four friendly matches against local teams and hosting football training sessions with young children, went extremely well. The players and staff enjoyed the informal break from competitive football, after a hectic 14 league matches in 44 days. A big thank you to all the PPCFC fans, old and new, that came to watch our friendly matches and who took time out to meet the players before and after the games. The interaction between fans and players was an important part of building a relationship between supporters and the club and was a key feature of this tour. The players enjoyed the support they received at each location, and we would also like to thank the staff at the three hotels we stayed in, Dara Reang Sey Angkor Hotel (Siem Reap), Crown Casino Hotel (Poipet) and Vimean Sovannaphoum Hotel (Battambang), who looked after us so well.
22 August 2015: PPCFC 12 Star Light FC (Battambang) 1 (Friendly).
In their final match on their northwest tour, PPCFC received a wake-up call after just two minutes of their visit to Battambang to play Star Light at the airport. A quick break and a goal gave the large home support something to cheer but that was about it, as Crown controlled the ball for the rest of the match to run out very comfortable winners. Prom Yaneat and Leng Makara put PPCFC in front before a hat-trick including two headers for George Bisan, and another goal for Yaneat to post a 6-1 half-time lead. Just 17 seconds into the 2nd-half, Um Tola touched the ball home and the rout continued. A stunning 30-yard volley from Touch Sokheng was followed by a Santi Koroma penalty for handball. Yongsun Baek cushioned in a header, as did Koroma from a yard before Bisan wrapped it up with an individual goal for his 4th.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

PPCFC on tour

PPCFC at Angkor Wat on tour in the northwest
Today the Phnom Penh Crown 1st-team squad will leave Poipet after a very successful two-day stay in the border town and will travel to Battambang. This afternoon (Saturday) at 3.30pm, the PPCFC team will play against Star Light FC at the Airport in Battambang. We urge all football fans in Battambang to come and watch the game and cheer for your team. Can Star Light FC beat the Cambodian Champions or will PPCFC continue their winning run of matches on their northwest tour of Cambodia? Come and see for yourselves. We want a BIG crowd to watch the final match of PPCFC’s tour. The tour has been a great success with large crowds coming to watch our three matches in Siem Reap and Poipet (match reports below), as well as our community activities with football coaching sessions by the players and staff and a mini-football festival with 120 children in Poipet.

21 August 2015:: PPCFC 9 Ly Hengchhay FC (Poipet) 2 (Friendly).
Crown finished their stay in Poipet with a convincing 9-2 victory over Ly Hengchhay at the 855Crown futsal pitch in front of another good-sized crowd. George Bisan scored a first-half hat-trick with Prom Yaneat and Long Boran also netting. The home side scored with the final kick of the half. Shane Booysen entertained the crowd with his ball skills as well as two goals after the break, with Um Tola also scoring twice late on. Overall, a good work-out for Crown who dominated throughout and made many new friends in Poipet.
20 August 2015: PPCFC 3 Asia4Bet FC (Poipet) 2 (Friendly).
After the children’s festival involving Crown, SALT Academy and the Mighty Girls, the squad played an 11-a-side friendly match on the futsal court against Asia4Bet FC and came out 3-2 winners, without really pushing too hard during the two 35-minute halves. Prom Yaneat and a rare Shane Booysen header gave Crown a 2-goal interval lead and Booysen extended that with a goal from an almost impossible angle. The home team never gave up and scored two goals but were always second-best, in front of a large audience.
18 August 2015: PPCFC 11 Next Step FC (Siem Reap) 3 (Friendly 9-a-side).
In the opening match of the PPCFC 1st-Team tour of the northwest provinces, a large crowd gathered at the Galaxy Goal futsal pitch in Siem Reap to witness a masterclass in futsal from the Cambodian champions, and a creditable never-give-in performance from Next Step. The game was 9-a-side and two halves of 35 minutes, with Long Boran scoring Crown’s opening goal on 3 minutes from a free-kick and adding a second on 15 minutes. Santi Koroma added another before a goalkeeping howler presented Next Step with a goal. Um Tola headed home from Boran’s long throw before Santi netted two more and one from Sor Polo to end the opening half at 7-1.
Crown changed their line-up for the second-half and George Bisan scored a brace of goals before the home team netted a real beauty of a goal. Shane Booysen and Lous Charly also got on the scoresheet before Next Step grabbed a late consolation. The match was played in an excellent spirit and gave the big crowd lots to cheer.
Children's football festival in Poipet
The Crown squad also took part in a children’s football festival in Poipet on Thursday, with 120 youngsters joining in with the SALT Academy and Mighty Girls from Battambang. It was a great success with both boys and girls up to the age of 16 enjoying themselves with ball skills, drills and six-a-side matches on the 855Crown field near the border with Thailand. In Siem Reap the players and staff held coaching sessions with a local NGO and an expat community team of children. This has been an important part of the club’s outreach program on their tour.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Held by Tiger

PPCFC vs Cambodian Tiger, back row, LtoR: Obadin, Bisan, Thierry, Sokngon, Ary, Boris (capt). Front: Dani, Suhana, Makara, Matnorotin, Booysen.
15 August 2015: Phnom Penh Crown 0 Cambodian Tiger 0 (Metfone C-League).
Despite extending their unbeaten MCL record to 14 games, Crown will be asking why their usually potent goal threat wasn’t in evidence on the artificial pitch at Western Stadium today. Yasuyuki Yoshida, in the Tiger goal, kept out a Kouch Dani early on and later denied Keo Sokngon, George Bisan and Sary Matnorotin. At the other end, Yok Ary was called into action to keep out Privat Mbarga and Suong Virak, whilst Mbraga failed to cash in on a rare weak defensive header from the ever-reliable Odion Obadin. The teams now go into a 1-month break from league action whilst the Cambodian national team focus on their World Cup preparations. PPCFC are top of the MCL table by 1 point from Boeung Ket, having played 1 game more.
Head coach Sam Schweingruber gave this reaction at the final whistle. “The first-half, it was pointless to be here, but the first 15 minutes of the 2nd half, we showed that we wanted to win, four half chances and with a bit more luck we could’ve scored, but when you are defending champions and you play against teams who celebrate a nil-nil draw like a victory, in the end you shouldn’t be surprised. Overall, Tiger worked really hard and deserved the draw. We were absolutely lifeless in the 1st half. It was pretty much a repetition of the Naga first-half, so very disappointed that we couldn’t learn the lessons. I didn’t get the response I wanted. I never settle for 1 point, that’s two points dropped in my view. A draw is a loss, that’s our idea for the whole season.”

Friday, August 14, 2015

Academy draw with Frenz at RSN

PPCFC vs Frenz, back row, LtoR: Chanpolin, Chhaya, Jason, Umaru, S Samnang, Sodavid (capt). Front: Sovann, Ponvuthy, Piphop, V Samnang, Baraing.
14 August 2015: Phnom Penh Crown Academy 1 Frenz United B 1 (U18 Asia Champions Trophy).
What a great game and areal credit to both teams for producing such a high quality ACT match under floodlights at RSN Stadium. Crown began brightly but it was both goalkeepers who were on top form early on, with Svang Samnang tipping a blast from Akhmar Haiqal over the cross-bar and Frenz’s Adam Zairi Zaini doing the same from Umaru Samura’s flicked header. Frenz took advantage of a defensive howler to open the scoring on 30 minutes, as Haiqal nipped in to steer the ball into an empty net. Just six minutes later and Jason Thomas got the all-important touch to an Ouk Sovann corner to put PPCFC back on level terms. Chances continued to be created at both ends, with the home team just edging in front in possession and opportunities created. In Sodavid and Sovann went very close, Haiqal rolled a shot inches wide and Adam Zaini pulled off a flying fingertip save in the top corner from Seut Baraing’s free-kick. Thomas was denied with five minutes to go when his header from Sovann’s corner was cleared off the goal-line, as Frenz ended the game with 10-men when Bursanudin Ahya was sent off for a second yellow card. A fabulous advertisement for the ACT2015.

PPCFC Academy head coach Bouy Dary was encouraged by the performance of the senior Academy team against Frenz United with an entertaining 1-1 draw, which was less than week after they lost 5-0 in Japan against Kashima. “The boys did really well, we created a lot of chances, we should really score more goals and win the game. For me I’m pleased with the result and the way we played, we had a lot of possession and chances, but sometimes we need a bit of luck as well. One thing we need to learn is that we need to be stronger. I think the Frenz keeper saved a lot of stuff tonight, some really good saves, he did really well. For our side, the whole team did really well but Jason scored a goal, caused them problems at set pieces and had a very good game defensively as well.”

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Close-fought success

Wednesday 12 August 2015: Phnom Penh Crown 1 Nagaworld 0 (Metfone C-League).
In the first match played at Olympic Stadium this season, PPCFC took their unbeaten record to 13 matches with their 11th victory, thanks to a single Shane Booysen goal on 56 minutes. Sary Matnorotin created the opportunity with a persistent run down the right wing and his pull-back center was drilled inside the far post by Booysen for his 13th goal of the campaign. The first-half was largely uneventful though Samrith Seiha’s fingertips took Booysen’s cross off the head of George Bisan and at the other end Sun Sovannrithy headed over from a free-kick. Naga came out of their defensive shell after Crown took the lead with Barry Lelouma behind most of their offensive moves, though it was Bisan who strolled past three challenges but couldn’t beat Seiha’s outstretched hand. PPCFC keeper Yok Ary dived low to keep out a Kouch Sokumpheak snap-shot, Leng Makara headed one effort off the goal-line and an injury-time header from Thorn Darapich hit Dani Kouch in the chest as Crown collected yet another win bonus of 3 points, in a closely-fought contest.

Crown head coach Sam Schweingruber offered this assessment of yesterday's 1-0 win over Nagaworld at Olympic Stadium. "The first-half we gave their defence a holiday. A lack of movement and a lack of intensity, I've never seen my team act so slow in transition, probably our laziest performance of the season. Some of the players said it was very hot with a 3.30 game and we didn't have perfect preparation as we came late to the stadium, something we need to improve and make sure is not repeated. We applied ourselves better in the second-half. For the first fifteen minutes the players had a different attitude on the field and we did enough to be more switched on, quicker, we pressed in their half and because of that 15 minutes, we deserved the win, even though it was a bit nerve-wracking in the end. Too many players were very tired and struggling, so compliments to Naga for changing their formation and for 25 minutes they gave us a run for the money."

Saturday, August 8, 2015


Saturday 8 August 2015: Phnom Penh Crown 7 Svay Rieng 1 (Metfone C-League).
The smile across George Bisan’s face at the full-time whistle said it all as the Nigerian hotshot demolished Svay Rieng at RSN Stadium with a 4-goal haul as Crown went on the goal rampage, winning 7-1 to register a memorable double over their rivals. Bisan confidently scored his first after just two minutes and Keo Sokngon set up Shane Booysen for number two, and the South African ball wizard netted with a perfect lob into the net on 10 minutes. Another piece of brilliance by Booysen as he flicked Touch Sokheng’s pass over the head of the defender and crashed his shot into the top corner gave Crown a three-goal margin on 21 minutes. Crown continued their dominance though keeper Yok Ary was called on to make two saves before the visitors went down to 10-men as Sok Samnang was red-carded for a second booking with three minutes of the first-half left to play.
Keo Sokpheng put an inch-perfect cross onto the head of Bisan on 52 minutes as Crown cemented their control with their 4th, but the striker sent a good chance the wrong side of the post after set up by Kok Boris soon after. Santi Koroma had replaced Booysen and nipped in before the keeper to tuck the ball home from Bisan’s pass on 61 minutes, though Atuheire Kipson saved Svay Rieng from a whitewash with a goal on 71 minutes. Ary and the cross-bar denied the visitors a second before Crown stormed back through a fine solo goal from Bisan on 81 minutes, and the top scorer was at it again with five minutes remaining, rising high to head Koroma’s cross inside the post for number 7 and a deserved win for the home side.
Head coach Sam Schweingruber’s after-match comments were: “We couldn’t ask for more than being up after a couple of minutes. I think we deserved it, the other team look scared from the beginning, we had the right intensity. I saw from the start that our boys were there to show what we are capable of doing. So very pleased with how we started the game. I wanted us to have a quality second period, as often we only play one good half. I’m very pleased with the second-half, even though they created some chances, which was impressive, and they kept trying, but we were disciplined enough, we have learned from previous mistakes in other games, and I think our quality and maturity was there for everyone to see.
George and Shane make a difference at certain times in games. I am happy with their impressive goals record. But I do want to see other players on the scoresheet. An impressive performance, a deserved win and an excellent reaction to the disappointment of the draw with Police, which we evaluated very carefully and now we are marching forward with these two wins over Svay Rieng. It was great to see so many fans today, supporting us in great numbers. Hopefully they can come to support us against Naga at Olympic Stadium on Wednesday.”

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Winning away

Wednesday 5 August 2015: Svay Rieng 1 Phnom Penh Crown 3 (Metfone C-League).
On an already waterlogged pitch and under heavy rain, Crown got off to the worst possible start when Dzarma Bata slipped through the middle of the defence to fire Svay Rieng into the lead after a mere 38 seconds. Nen Sothearoth then curled a free-kick against the cross-bar before Crown got their first sight of goal, with Shane Booysen’s effort ruled out for offside. The wet surface was not helping either side though Sos Suhana blasted just wide and for the home team, Samoeun Pidor won a race with Yok Ary but couldn’t finish. With the match simmering, it boiled over on 42 minutes when Booysen went through and fell under the challenge of keeper Aim Sovannarath. The referee booked the keeper and awarded a penalty only to change his mind a minute later after consulting with his assistant.
The second-half belonged to Crown, as they showed their intent from the word go. George Bisan headed inches wide and then blasted over the top when well-placed. Then on 72 minutes his touch from Odion Obadin’s long ball went to the feet of Keo Sokpheng and his sublime strike from 20 yards sailed into the top corner for a beautiful goal. Four minutes later and Keo Sokngon’s inch-perfect cross was met on the volley by Leng Makara at close range to give the visitors the lead. It was now all one-way traffic with Sokngon’s shot smothered and a Booysen effort missing the target by a whisker. In the fifth minute of time added on, Crown wrapped up the 3 points when Sokngon fed Santi Koroma who laid the ball into the path of Suhana and he blasted home from 16 yards. The match ended with the Crown players giving their thanks to the fantastic travelling support, who sang throughout the whole 90 minutes.
Sam Schweingruber, Crown’s head coach, gave his thoughts after the final whistle at Svay Rieng. “Our preparation for the match wasn’t ideal – the pitch was flooded the day before and our warm-up was not on the soggy pitch, so we went out there a bit uncertain, though that’s no excuse for going a goal down so early. Very disappointed with how we conceded – definitely a big issue as our game plan went out of the window after 40 seconds. In the 1st-half we failed to do enough to really get into the game. Our plan worked out with our substitutions, very happy with how the team showed character and spirit. In the 2nd-half we were the only team that wanted to win the game, but things didn’t go our way until we scored our first goal. I’m very happy for Sokpheng to score such a screamer, and it came from a situation we talked about at half-time. I was proud of the team for their fighting spirit and for not giving up, pushing for more and you could see when we scored what it meant to the team. And we were not satisfied, we wanted to win.
I must mention our fans, who were excellent. I heard them throughout, it was nice to have the drums and the support, it’s very encouraging to be far from home and to have people making so much noise and supporting you, it was a great experience. To have our supporters with us was a nice taste of a real professional football environment. I can’t speak highly enough of our fans.”
Wednesday 5 August 2015: Kashima Antlers 5 Phnom Penh Crown Academy 0 (Asia Champions Trophy)
The Crown Academy fell to a strong Kashima Antlers U-18 team who led by three goals at the break and went onto win 5-0 in this opening Asia Champions Trophy match at their 40,000-seater stadium. Playing in front of their home fans Kashima controlled the match right from the kick-off making Crown work hard for the ball. Midfielder Takanobu Nishimoto scored Kashima first ever goal in the competition on 11th minutes after some confusion in the penalty box. Two minutes later Yuki Kakita slotted in the second goal. The two quick-fire goals put pressure on the Cambodians as they struggled to contained the running and quick passing play from Kashima.
The home team continued to dictate the match, organizing attacks and their effort prove fruitful when in the 23rd minute, Hayato Ishizu’s effort founds the back of the net. Head Coah Bouy Dary decided to make changes with Chhuot Senteang brought in to replace Suon Noeut on 32 minutes.  The game was in Kashima’s favour 3-0 at the interval.
The Japanese kept their momentum, dominating possession of the ball and the 4th goal arrived on 59 minutes through the substitute striker Yuki Shikama that came in just a minute into the match to replace third goal scorer Hayato Ishizu. Juriya Yoshioka finished off any hope of a comeback for Crown in the 65th minute when he scored the fifth goal after a good combination of passes in the middle of the pitch.
After the loss Crown Head Coach, Bouy Dary feels that the boys were not focused and took their time a little bit too much to get used to the condition at the Stadium. “The players came out cold, and bit of fear maybe, which is disappointed as we discussed this before the game.” Dary was speaking to the media after the match. “We lost the game in the opening 20 minutes. Three errors resulted in three goals, clinical play from Kashima. After the first half water break we worked harder out of possession and were more confident with the ball. We created some chances especially Uma and Sovann, at this level you’ve got to take those chances.
Next match for PPCFC Academy is at home in RSN Stadium where they will play Frenz United B and Dary is hoping to turn the page as quickly as possible. “Overall I don’t think the players showed their real quality and potential, we will regroup and focus on next week home game against Frenz. I hope our home fans turn out to support us and make lots of noise” he added. This match will be on Friday, 14 August. [Report courtesy of http://www.act.frenzunited.com.my/.]

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Crown arrested by Police

Sunday 2 August 2015: Phnom Penh Crown 1 National Police 1 (Metfone C-League).
Crown dropped points for only the second time this season this afternoon in the rain-delayed match-up between the 2nd and 3rd-placed teams in the Metfone C-League at the RSN Stadium. After yesterday’s first 25 minutes was ended by torrential rain, today’s main talking point came on 64 minutes when Police scored against the run of play. Noun Borey was coming back from an offside position when he obstructed Kok Boris, allowing Yuske Ishi a free run on goal to score. No-one in Crown colours could believe the match officials allowed the goal to stand. Five minutes later Crown were level when Bin Thierry’s inswinging free-kick was headed firmly past his own goalkeeper by a diving Busayo Adekunjo for an own goal. Va Sokthorn, Thierry and George Bisan went close but despite Crown’s pressure, the game ended all-square. In the 25 minutes of play at RSN Stadium yesterday, Va Sokthorn had a chance cleared off the line, Sary Matnorotin crashed a drive against the goal post and Police keeper Prak Phearun twice saved at close range from George Bisan and Leng Makara before the heavy rain made further play impossible.
Head coach Sam Schweingruber gave his after-match views on the 1-1 draw with National Police. “I told my team yesterday and today, there are no excuses. I knew the rain would affect the game, if you want to be champions, there are no excuses. We have to play better than this, we have to be at a better level. That the referee has a very poor game – there are no excuses.
Yesterday I thought we started shocking, were caught napping and in gaga-land. But from 5-25 minutes we played excellent football and did a lot of things we wanted to do and it worked for us. So I felt confident for today. For the 20 minutes before half-time we were in complete control, apart from giving away too many free-kicks. I thought the games was all ours, then the rain came again. I think we did a good job in trying to keep the ball. But I was not impressed with a lot of performances today. This was not a good game for us, and we have to blame ourselves.
The Police goal was a huge mistake by the referee. We made lots of mistakes, so did the referee – his mistake cost us a goal, our mistakes cost us goals too. It’s very disappointing that he didn’t see the situation – clearly an offside player interfering with play by obstructing a defender tracking back. A smart move by Borey, he managed to cheat a goal and the referee didn’t get it. We were lucky that our loss of discipline didn’t end up in defeat. The way we reacted to the goal is usually a recipe for disaster. So seeing how angry we were, in that sense, I’m glad we got a point.
We dominated for 90 minutes, both yesterday and again today. We weren’t clinical enough but we were the better team and the only team that wanted to win the game. My job now is to see this as a wake-up call, we need to evaluate our performance and to understand why we were at the level today that is not enough to be champions.”

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

8 wins on the trot

Wednesday 29 July 2015: Phnom Penh Crown 1 BBU 0 (Metfone C-League).
Phnom Penh Crown took their winning streak of results to eight successive Metfone C-League victories but at a cost when defender Ngoy Srin fell awkwardly in the closing moments of the game and suffered a serious fracture of his arm. The Crown players were visibly shaken by the freak accident as the full-time whistle went soon after. The only goal of the game at RSN Stadium came on 33 minutes when Shane Booysen hit a first-time effort inside the far post for goal number 10 this season, after fabulous approach play by Va Sokthorn. Crown went close on other occasions through George Bisan, Sary Matnorotin, Sokthorn and Leng Makara and led by a single goal at the break. Two floodlight failures early in the second-half, causing a thirty-one minute delay, broke the game’s rhythm though Crown created the most dangerous moments through Bisan, Keo Sokpheng and Booysen without extending their lead. Crown go back to the top of the MCL on 25 points from 9 games played.
Following the 1-nil success, head coach Sam Schweingruber offered up his thoughts. “After the last 4 or 5 games one of the major messages from me to the players was that we need to be more disciplined and better organised, to take our defending more seriously. In that way we regret when we don’t score more but I’m quite happy when we show discipline and work really hard. I don’t think they (BBU) had a real chance in the whole game. I thought we should’ve finished it off with a few more goals, we definitely had enough to score a second or a third in the second-half. It was very disappointing and sad that one of the players who stuck to the game plan and played a very disciplined and selfless game – Srin – should suffer such a serious injury. I hope he recovers quickly. The team was shocked, some were in tears, they felt really sad for their teammate, but that’s football, it’s happened to other teams too and we have to deal with it.
Our goal was brilliance by Sokthorn. His driving, quick passing and the final ball to Shane to score was very clinical. Some great work throughout the game from Sokthorn, maybe my man of the match. I was shocked how the officials didn’t understand what was happening with Shane – not protecting one of the best players in the league – finally after the fifth poor foul on him we saw a yellow card. He was also booked for nothing but great players have to deal with that kind of treatment. Finally, I want to apologise to the fans and to BBU for the floodlight failure. It’s not satisfying and we will sort it out.”
Update: The latest update on defender Ngoy Srin is that he underwent surgery on a double fracture of his left forearm in the early hours of this morning. The surgeon, Dr Vuthy, said the surgery to insert two pins to knit the bones together was a success and if everything goes to plan, he could be back on the training pitch in three months time. Srin is currently under observation at Dr Vuthy’s clinic and everyone at PPCFC sends him their best wishes for a complete recovery and thanks to all the fans who have sent their kind words of support and encouragement.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Crown hit five

PPCFC vs Western, back row, LtoR: Obadin (capt), Thierry, Bisan, Srin, Booysen, Ary. Front: Dani, Sokthorn, Suhana, Matnorotin, C Pisa - click to enlarge
Saturday 25 July 2015: Western 3 Phnom Penh Crown5 (Metfone C-League).
Crown took their consecutive wins to 7 with this victory on a very wet Western artificial surface. In a dominant first-half, Crown went three goals up by the break with two George Bisan headers, from crosses by Va Sokthorn and Shane Booysen, on 16 and 31 minutes. Booysen, who earlier struck the cross-bar, stepped up to convert a penalty for hand-ball on 41 minutes. Bin Thierry blasted a free-kick against the bar and other chances went begging, before Mohammed Tijani curled in a great shot on 66 minutes for the home team. With 9 minutes to go, Booysen took a pass from Keo Sokngon in his stride and crashed in his second goal, but Western came back again, through a Tijani header from close range on 87 minutes. In the last minute of normal time, Booysen completed his hat-trick, cracking home a Kouch Dani cross for Crown's fifth though there was still time for Mathew Osa to send a low drive inside the post to end the match at 5-3 in Crown's favour.
Full match report to follow.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Academy upset Boeungket

PPCFC Academy vs Bouengket, back row, LtoR: Thomas, Danny, Chanpolin, Sodavid, Chanchav, Titchhy, Samura. Front: Sovann, Chansopheak, Ponvuthy, Baraing - click to enlarge
Thursday 23 July 2015: Result: Phnom Penh Crown Academy 3 Boeungket 2 (Friendly).
A masterful performance by the Crown senior Academy saw them dominate for the majority of this friendly at RSN this morning. Against a strong Boeungket line-up, the Academy created many chances in both halves, but fell to a sucker punch six minutes before the break, as the visitors scored a breakaway goal. Crown continued to frustrate in front of goal until Umaru Samura threaded a pass through the defence and Ken Chansopheak drilled the ball inside the post on 56 minutes. Now in complete control, Ouk Sovann curled a free-kick against the bar and then blasted another shot against the foot of the post while the visiting goalkeeper saved his team on three occasions with point-blank stops. On 76 minutes, Boeungket completed a smash and grab raid to go further ahead but Crown continued to push forward and were rewarded for their pressure with two goals in the last five minutes. Umaru let fly from the edge of the box and his shot took a slight deflection into the roof of the net for the leveller. With a minute to go, In Sodavid crossed for Jason Thomas, who controlled perfectly and rolled the ball to Umaru, who rifled his shot into the net for a very deserved winning goal.

In second spot, still

PCFC starting XI, back row, LtoR: Thierry, Bisan, C Pisa, Makara, Ary, Boris (capt). Front: Dani, Boran, Suhana, Koroma, Booysen - click to enlarge
Thursday 23 July 2015: Kirivong 2 Phnom Penh Crown 5 (Metfone C-League).
Crown maintained their unbeaten record to remain in 2nd place but found Kirivong stubborn opponents. In fact Kirivong led 2-1 at the half-time interval with goals from Meng Sombor on 23 minutes and Ek Sopheap on 36 minutes. Sandwiched in between, George Bisan scored for Crown, knocking the ball in at the far post from a Bin Thierry free-kick on 33 minutes. Kirivong went a man down just before the break when Adebayo Ademola was sent off for a 2nd yellow card, tripping Bisan as he was in on goal. Eight minutes into the 2nd half, Kirivong lost another player, Meng Sombor for two yellow cards in quick succession for fouls on Leng Makara. As Crown pressed home their advantage, Makara and Santi Koroma hit the woodwork before the equaliser finally arrived on 72 minutes as Shane Booysen finished off a pass from Bisan. Two minutes later, Booysen was on the scoresheet again, blasting the ball home from close range after Bisan's header was cleared off the line. It was all one-way traffic and Bisan netted his second, heading in a Booysen cross and then completed his hat-trick in the 91st minute, running onto Yok Ary's long kick and walking the ball into the net. 5-2 to PPCFC and job done.
Match report to follow.